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Artists in Schools (AIS) Grant

Grants to Alaska School Districts, Schools, and
Nonprofits for Classroom Residencies with Artists

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Alaska State Council on the Arts

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Grants of up to $5,000 and grants of up to $15,000 to Alaska K-12 public schools and school districts, private schools, and nonprofits for short-term artists residencies to enhance school arts education. New applicants must call the program office before applying. Artists, selected from a State roster of teaching artists, will supplement the arts curriculum and also integrate with other subject curricula. Visual, performing, literary, or native arts are all eligible art forms.

Residencies are for two weeks and must take place during school hours. Residencies should include as many of the following groups as possible, both within the school and in the greater community: elderly, pre-K, military populations, people with disabilities, and underserved populations. Underserved communities or populations are defined as those whose access to arts programs, services or resources or whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, economic conditions, cultural demographic, socio-political circumstances, disability, age, or other demonstrable factors.

Artists in Schools (AIS) residencies should provide high-quality arts experiences and training for students, teachers, and the greater community. Successful applicants will:
- Demonstrate the way in which a residency will augment the arts curriculum and the Alaska State Content Standards for Art and connect to other core curriculum;
- Include a professional development opportunity for teachers in integrating the residency discipline into future teaching; and
- Create a plan for engagement between the artist, school, and local community.

Applications will be judged on how well they address these goals:
- Enhance students’ powers of perception, appreciation of the arts, and abilities to express themselves creatively
- Augment and enhance the arts curriculum of Alaskan School Districts
- Help teachers develop strategies to integrate the arts into their daily classroom instruction
- Provide opportunities for artists to develop professionally
- Provide experiences through programs that encourage the varied cultures of Alaska

Eligible expenses include a maximum of $1,000 a week in artist fees, transportation, supplies for the residency, administrative fee of no more than 20% of the total expense, phone, postage and marketing.

In collaboration with the artist, grantees are responsible for the planning and implementation of the residency, including payments to the artist(s), travel and accommodations for artists, and arrangements for project space, supplies and equipment. Many grantees find it helpful to convene a committee to work on the planning and implementation of the residency.

Application Review Criteria:
- Relevance of the residency to the district's written arts curriculum and a plan to integrate the residency activities into the curriculum;
- Relevance to ASCA’s strategic mission and goals as stated in the Strategic Plan;
- Evaluation process of the residency accurately measures the goal of the residency;
- Applicant shows a strong level of commitment to ensure success of residency and the long-term impact of the program. Strong applications illustrate joint planning, pre- and post-residency activities, and evidence that this is part of a sustained arts program, beyond the term of the residency;
- Professional development opportunities for teachers and teaching artists are included;
- The written application is clear and complete, including description of the goals and objectives of the proposed residency, description of the way in which progress toward those goals and objectives is to be measured, information about the activities and schedule to be implemented during the residency, clear evidence of commitment from the artist to the project, and strong supporting materials;
- The residency will be marketed outside the school, and the application clearly details a plan to identify audiences for the teacher training as well as the community activities;
- Description of the community is clear and complete including succinct and accurate written description of the community(ies) benefiting, evidence of adequate equipment and facilities required for the residency, as well as suitable housing, food and transportation plans for the artist, if applicable;
- Accuracy, viability and completeness of proposed budget, including in-kind;
- District applicants include teaching artist training and inclusion of these artists in the residency;
- Prior compliance with grant requirements.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 175294

Estimated Size of Grant:

AIS Grants will fund up to $5,000 for individual schools and up to $15,000 for district-wide applications. Please note: whether multiple schools from a single school district apply individually, or a school district applies on behalf of multiple school sites, districts will be limited to $15,000 total AIS funding.

Term of Contract:

Funding is for the following school year. All residencies must begin after July 1.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Public school districts or schools or private, nonprofit schools in Alaska are eligible to apply to the Alaska State Council on the Arts for an AIS grant.

Any school or nonprofit organization in partnership with a school (PTA) is eligible to apply for AIS residencies unless the school district in which the school resides is also an applicant.

Nonprofit organizations and/or parent groups can provide assistance to schools in the application process. If a nonprofit is the applicant, they must provide a letter on district or school letterhead detailing how the nonprofit organization's plan augments and supports the district-approved arts curriculum. If there is no approved arts curriculum for the school or district, applicants will be asked to detail the steps being taken to develop and/or adopt an arts curriculum in the district, and the way in which the school or district is working to meet the Alaska State Art Content Standards in the absence of an adopted art curriculum.

If a district or school has received funding in the past year and has not fulfilled the grant requirements, a clearly articulated explanation must be submitted or the application may not be funded.

The Alaska State Council on the Arts will not fund:
- Residencies lasting less than two weeks per application.
- Residencies that are designed to be an isolated arts experience and have no connection to the district's approved arts curriculum or Alaska State Content Standards for the arts. For example, projects that do not contain outcomes or follow through of skills.
- Incomplete or late applications.
- Funding for organizations or schools that received funding in prior years, but failed to file a final report.

Equipment like video equipment, kilns, pottery wheels, instruments, etc. are not allowable expenses. Housing and meals for the artist are not either allowable expenses to include in the budget.

Pre-Application Information:

Deadlines for submission are April 15 (for the following school year) and November 1 (for the current school year). All residencies must begin after July 1.

Applications for Round I, with a deadline of April 15 are reviewed by the Council at the annual meeting in June. Notification will occur during the summer break. Applications for Round II, with a deadline of November 1, are reviewed by a grant review panel in December and approved by the Council at its mid- December meeting.

If a district or school has not applied for an AIS grant in the past the applicant must contact the program director, Laura Forbes.

Individual schools must provide 1/3 of the cash expenses as match for the proposed AIS project. Districts must provide a 1:1 match.

Shared residencies that last less than two weeks in each school should be submitted jointly, with one school serving as the lead applicant.

Successful applicants serve as chief sponsor, designer, and coordinator of the program. Technical assistance in the form of artist contract templates, procedure guidelines, etc. are available from the Alaska State Council on the Arts staff.

Application Information:

Program Guidelines:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Online application:

Laura Forbes, Program Director
(907) 269-6682
Toll free in Alaska: 1 (888) 278-7424

Alaska State Council on the Arts
161 Klevin Street, Suite 102
Anchorage, AK 99508-1506
Telephone: 907-269-6610
Fax: 907-269-6601

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alaska