NEA grant nets $70k for education

Daily Planet Wire Services
Friday May 17, 2002

Oakland - Partnerships among local artists and public school teachers in Berkeley will allow arts education to flourish in classrooms thanks to a $70,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. 

ARTS Ed, the arts education initiative of the East Bay Community Foundation, and its consortium partners have been awarded a $70,000 grant from the NEA. ARTS Ed, Julia Morgan Center for the Arts, Berkeley Unified School District and the Berkeley Arts in Education Steering Committee will use the funds to expand the ability of school administrators, teachers and parents to sustain arts programs in their schools. 

"The deeper advantages of arts in the schools will be seen locally thanks to the support of the NEA," said Elena Ronquillo, ARTS Ed Director. "Partnerships of community arts organizations, artists, classroom teachers and parents have been shown to provide systems of support that help students do their best. We are very pleased to champion creative approaches to teaching and learning." This grant will help ensure that schools receive and integrate community arts resources into the classroom. Teachers, administrators and parents will benefit from customized training sessions led by local artists and acknowledged experts that will enable participants to better integrate arts education into their school day. Artists from the Julia Morgan Center for the Arts will provide training to teachers and administrators in the Berkeley Unified School District. ARTS Ed will offer additional professional development workshops and presentations to supplement this work. All partners will work together to plan, schedule and evaluate the program. 

According to Sabrina Klein, Executive Director of the Julia Morgan Center for the Arts, "Artists and teachers share so much in their work, and yet so often work in isolation from each other in a way that is detrimental to both. This detriment in turn becomes a loss in the classroom. Teaching partnerships vitalize and engage artists, teachers, students and the whole school environment in a way that is life altering for everyone involved. The benefits to students and teachers keep unfolding throughout the educational cycle, and continue as well to reveal themselves in the artists’ work for years to come." 

The NEA released a total of $60.7 million to arts groups around the country in the second and largest round of grants for the fiscal year 2002. The ARTS Ed initiative is one of 47 Bay Area organizations that will split $918,000 in grants. 

ARTS Ed, an initiative of the East Bay Community Foundation, supports partnerships with arts organizations and schools to ensure creative learning experiences for children in the East Bay. Founded in 1928, the East Bay Community Foundation manages more than 400 charitable funds and over $130 million in donor assets in service of the residents and diverse communities of Alameda and Contra Costa counties. Last year the Foundation granted more than $16 million to nonprofit organizations. 

For more information, visit www.eastbaycf.org and www.artsedeastbay.org or call 510/ 836.3223.