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

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

Illinois Arts Council Agency (IACA) and Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE)

Agency: State

GrantWatch ID #143842

Grant Description

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Grants to Illinois public school districts, vocational centers, and schools to develop or expand foreign language and arts learning opportunities. Funding is intended to support the creation and improvement of creative, curriculum-based arts education or foreign language programs.

The Arts and Foreign Language Education Grant Program (AFL) is a joint initiative through Illinois Arts Council Agency (IACA) and the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE).  Its purpose 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.  

Funding is available for each area for up to four years, with one year of planning and three years of implementation. The one-year Planning Assistance Grant is to develop district-based plans for initiating, strengthening, or expanding instruction in the arts or foreign language. The three-year Implementation Grant is to introduce, strengthen, or expand instruction in the arts or foreign language and to develop means of perpetuating the funded program with local resources after the conclusion of the grant period.  In FY23, funding is available for the Implementation Assistance Grant.
AFL has provided funds to over one hundred school districts across the state and has resulted in the expansion and creation of:
  • World language exploration courses
  • Pre-professional courses in the graphic arts, commercial art, illustration and advanced placement
  • World drumming courses, multicultural music and art, and cross-curricular materials
  • Digital photography class
  • New courses in Chinese and Arabic and continuing programs in Spanish, French and German
  • New faculty positions
  • New programs in dance and movement
  • Theater instruction and productions
  • New district wide curricular and assessment standards
  • Guitar instruction and jazz ensembles
Additionally, schools have used funds to purchase:
  • Technological, curricular and resource materials
  • Professional seminars and conference registrations
  • Class supplies, musical instruments and computer software
  • Artist-in-residence services

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Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicants: School districts, public university laboratory schools approved by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), charter schools, and area vocational centers are eligible to apply.

No grantee may receive more than one implementation grant for the arts and one for foreign language under this grant program. Applicants who have received an implementation grant for the arts and for foreign language are not eligible to apply for further grant awards under this program.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Opportunities to connect with IACA staff for questions:
– Arts and Foreign Language Education Grant Webinar, pre-registration is required:
A. Wednesday, October 19, 2022, at 1:00pm:

– Drop-in session for questions on the program or online platform, there is no pre-registration for the
drop-in session. To join click on the link at the meeting time:
A. Friday, November 4, 2022, at 1:00pm:

Pre-Application Information:

The FY23 AFL Implementation Assistance Grant deadline is November 17, 2022. Applications must be successfully submitted to the IACA’s Salesforce system by 11:59 pm CST.

Workshops and Webinars:

Additional Funding Information:

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Annual grant awards will not exceed $100,000 depending on the programmatic needs, size of district, and level of implementation proposed.

Term of Contract:

The grant period will begin no sooner than February 2023 and will extend from the execution date of the grant until November 15, 2023.

Contact Information:

Apply Online:

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

For general information contact:
Illinois Arts Council Agency
James R. Thompson Center
100 West Randolph, Suite 10-500
Chicago, IL 60601-3230
Phone: +1 (312) 814-6750
Toll-free in Illinois: +1 (800) 237-6994

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