Strong arts education is grounded in good teaching. But the arts also require time, space, and financial and administrative support to thrive in schools. Teachers and art specialists need to be trained, performance and classroom facilities need to be maintained, supplies need to be purchased, and programs need to be assessed. In turn, each of these requirements needs to be funded.
Arts education often faces an even greater challenge than other school subjects in the implementation and sustenance of new and existing programs. When school districts experience budget cuts, the arts are often eliminated first. As a result, art instructors are dismissed at a greater rate than their colleagues in other departments.
Schools often need to solicit additional funding to guarantee the efficacy of arts curriculum and programs. Collaborations between schools and community resources can also help protect the place that the arts deserve in every school. Some organizations that allocate funds for such partnerships include corporations, foundations, state or local arts agencies, and local arts centers. Some universities also become deeply involved in collaborating with local school systems.
Awareness and accountability can help secure federal, state, foundational, or corporate support. Teachers and administrators should become familiar with publications, resources, and information produced by many of these agencies, which can be easily accessed on the Internet. They also should develop assessment tools that can measure the impact of their proposed program. Funders want results. Reflecting on the goals, practices, and outcomes of educational initiatives in the arts is beneficial not only to secure a grant, but also to improve the overall arts experience.
To access more information about funding opportunities for your school or community arts center, visit the references and links located on our site.