At Boston’s annual Citywide Arts Festival the City of Boston, Boston Public Schools (BPS) and EdVestors announced $450,000 in new grants to help expand the arts in local schools as part of BPS’s Arts Expansion initiative.
Students at five East Boston schools will share in the grant money with nearly sixty other schools districtwide. Students at the East Boston High School, the McKay K-8, the Adams Elementary School, the Bradley Elementary and the O’Donnell Elementary will continue to receive more quality arts education through the Arts Expansion initiative grant money.
“We believe that all Boston residents should have the ability to engage in creativity and be part of Boston’s rich arts and culture scene, so it is so exciting to have so many of our BPS students showcasing their talents throughout the Citywide Arts Festival” said Mayor Martin Walsh. “We are grateful to the partners in the Boston Public Schools Arts Expansion, who have been working on the issue of equity and access to arts education for nearly a decade.”
The BPS Arts Expansion initiative is a multi-year effort focused on increasing access, equity and quality of arts learning for BPS students. The 2018-2019 school year grants mark the tenth year of grant-making for the Arts Expansion initiative fund. It also marks the first year for Phase IV of the initiative.
As part of this fourth phase of the BPS Arts Expansion initiative, the Walsh Administration, BPS, and EdVestors are working together to raise $3 million to sustain high levels of arts education in the district over a three-year period.
As a result of this ongoing collaboration there are now 80 percent more arts teachers working with 65 community arts partners providing arts instruction to more than 17,000 students annually.
“Supporting our children’s creative and intellectual growth through arts education is an important investment in our future,” said President & CEO of EdVestors Laura Perille. “Boston is leading the nation in increasing access to quality arts education, and we are proud of our long-term partnership with the Boston Public Schools and our committed partners to close opportunity gaps for our students.”
Bradley School Principal Claire Carney said BPS’s Arts Expansion initiative has had a huge impact on her school.
“We are excited to announce that through a combination of funds from the Arts Expansion Initiative and fundraising through our Friends of the Bradley (501c3) we will be able to offer a 12 week performing arts program through the Community Music Center of Boston (CMCB) for students in K0 through Grade 5,” she said. “We believe in the importance of arts education for every child in Boston and have committed much our fundraising efforts at the school to making this a reality here at the Bradley.”