The Professional Development Grant for schools supports fine arts specialists, classroom teachers, school administrators, teaching artists, or a combination of these groups. This program seeks to enhance and strengthen fine arts teaching and/or arts integration skills. Projects must adhere to the  High Quality Standards of Professional Development.

Who May Apply

PK-12 schools are eligible to apply for Professional Development Grants.

What and How Much We Fund

We offer two grant tracks: Express Grants and Annual Grants. The maximum Express Grant award is $4,000. The maximum Annual Grant award is $40,000. Grant funds may be used to pay the presenter(s), to pay for the presenter’s travel expenses, and to purchase project-related materials and supplies as well as marketing materials. Funds cannot pay for equipment, food, beverages, awards, or event tickets. Annual Professional Development Grants must be matched dollar for dollar. Teacher and administrator time may be used for cash match. Express Grants do not require matching funds.

When It Happens

For FY25, all project funds must be spent between July 1, 2024 and June 30, 2025.

How We Make Funding Decisions

A panel evaluates and scores each application for artistic quality, arts learning, and management capabilities. Annual Grant awards reflect the score as a percentage of the request. Express Grant applications that meet panel approval will be fully funded at requested amount.

Application Information

Application Dates: Applications for Professional Development Grants for schools take place once a year. Draft applications for staff review are due Monday, January 29, 2024. Final applications are due Monday, February 26, 2024. Applications for Express Professional Development Grants for schools are on rolling deadlines. Apply by the first Monday of each month, two months in advance of the month in which the project incurs expenses. For example, for a project that incurs expenses in May, the application must be received no later than the first Monday in March. If the first Monday is a holiday, the deadline is on Tuesday. We encourage schools to submit applications early.

You will submit an application through  Smart Simple, our online grant application program. You will give information in the following areas:

  1. Applicant Information (Name, ID numbers, School details, grant program)
  2. Project Information In narrative format, you will describe your project. What is the fine arts area to be studied? Who is the facilitator/presenter? What will the project achieve? How does the project support your department/program goals? How does the project support learning in and with the arts? What learning standards will be focused on? How will you evaluate the project’s success?
  3. Target Group(s) Information about the educator groups in the project. Who are they and why are they your focus?
  4. Artistic Quality Evidence of facilitator/presenter and program excellence
  5. Arts Learning Goals Supported by learning standards; evaluation and assessment tools
  6. Administrative Ability Marketing, management, community involvement, and finances
  7. Underserved Students For nonprofit organizations only, information regarding your target groups
  8. Budget Detail (program income and expenses)
  9. Attachments Facilitator resume and letter of intent; support materials as needed; tax documents and board information
  10. Compliance Statement (Authorizing official) For public schools, the authorizing official is the superintendent; for private schools, the principal. This individual is the sole person who can sign the grant contract.