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Grants to Illinois School Districts, Vocational Centers, and Public Universities to Develop Foreign Language and Arts Programming

Arts and Foreign Language Education (AFL): Planning Assistance Grant


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
Illinois Arts Council Agency (IACA)
Array ( )

Geographic Focus
USA: Illinois

Important Dates
Deadline: 12/05/23 11:59 PM CST Save

Grant Description
Grants of up to $40,000 to Illinois public school districts, vocational centers, and public universities to develop or expand foreign language and arts learning opportunities. Funding is intended for the development of plans to strengthen, expand, or initiate instruction in foreign languages or the arts in each district.

The purpose of this program is to support arts and foreign language education in schools, with an emphasis on ensuring that these areas become part of the school’s core curriculum. 

Grant Goal

Planning grant funds are for the purpose of developing specific plans for initiating, strengthening, or expanding instruction in the arts or in foreign languages. The goal of each Planning Grant is to assist with measuring the effectiveness of the existing arts education or foreign language program, identifying areas for improvement, and establishing a realistic timeline and budget for improving arts education or foreign language instruction. As part of the planning process, grant applicants must identify the necessary components of an instructional program to be added or enhanced and the human, financial, and other resources that will be necessary in order to incorporate components into the affected schools’ curriculum and sustain them when State funding is no longer available.  

Program Specifications

Eligible applicants should consider the steps necessary to implement innovative, curriculum-based arts education or foreign language programs that are presented in a sequential and developmentally appropriate manner, add higher-level learning opportunities, and are aligned with the Illinois Learning Standards and other district learning goals. Foreign language instruction focuses on the acquisition of another language beyond English. The arts include visual arts, music, theatre, media arts, and dance. Each applicant must propose a comprehensive, district-based planning process relating either to the arts or foreign language. The planning process must include not only school administrators, teachers, and other relevant staff members, but also parents and community-based organizations with an interest in fostering the availability of arts or foreign language programming. In the case of proposals for high school programs, students should be included in the planning process.

For details about program specification and allowable expenditures, see: ;


Additional Eligibility Criteria
Eligible applicants are public school districts, public university laboratory schools, area vocational centers, and charter schools.

Non-Allowable Expenditures
Funds made available under the AFL Planning Assistance Grant may not be used for the following purposes:
- Incidental or short-term projects
- Extra-curricular programs, before- or after-school programs, or summer programs
- Technology for student use
- Software (except where it directly relates to curriculum development by staff)
- Capital improvements (e.g., building modifications)
- Capital outlay for classrooms (e.g., materials, supplies, textbooks, classroom-based software packages)
- Staff salary to work with students
- Administrative costs of more than 5 percent
- Outside organizations or individuals to provide programming
- International travel

Pre-Proposal Conference
There will be an online Webinar about the RFP designed to provide technical assistance to applicants. During the webinar, the staff will discuss best practices and how to use the agency’s online Salesforce grant platform. The webinar will be recorded, posted to the agency’s website, and be available for download.
AFL Application Webinar, pre-registration is required:
o Wednesday, October 25,2023, 1:00 PM
o Click Here to Register:

Drop-in sessions are one-hour sessions that have no agenda. Participants may ask questions of the participating Programs staff and get answers in real time. Pre-registration is not available.
To join click on the link at the meeting time:
o Drop-In: Friday, November 17, 2023, 1:00 PM
o Click Here to Join:

Pre-Application Information
Deadline: December 5, 2023, 11:59 PM CST

It is recommended to verify eligibility with Program Director Jerome Grand before applying.

Workshops and webinars:
Proof of Eligibility:

Additional Funding Information

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant
Up to $40,000

Term of Contract
The grant period will begin no sooner than March 15, 2024, and will extend from the execution date of the grant until November 15, 2024.

Contact Information
Apply Online:

For specific information on this grant contact:
Jerome Grand
Program Director
Illinois Arts Council Agency
Phone: +1 (312) 814-6766

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