19 Oregon Arts Organizations Receive Arts Learning Grant Awards 

(Students at Talent Elementary School learn an African gumboot dance as part of the Rogue World Music Songbirds project in the fall of 2017 | Photo courtesy of Oregon Arts Commission )

Nineteen arts organizations will each receive $10,000 grant awards to support their educational projects in partnership with Oregon schools through $190,000 in FY2021, the Oregon Arts Commission Arts Learning funding has announced.

“Given the challenges Oregon communities are facing, due to the pandemic and the devastating wildfires, this is an especially important time to protect our students’ social and emotional well being,” said Arts Commission Chair Anne Taylor, who chaired the review panel. “Creative outlets can offer young people a way to soothe their fear and anxiety. The beauty and challenge of arts learning can be a hopeful diversion during difficult times. It also inspires further development of problem-solving skills, important for our future leaders,” she said.

One of the organizations receiving funding is Rogue World Music, to support virtual arts instruction for students in the Phoenix Talent School District — recently devastated by wildfires. Rogue World Music is working creatively with teachers to ensure those students will still have access to the program.

Arts Learning grants are designed to: support high-quality projects that provide a responsive opportunity for learning in and through the arts to benefit K-12 students; foster exchange of knowledge between artists and educators; and impact the achievement, skills and/or attitudes of learners. 

Applications were evaluated based on project quality and artistic excellence, artistic merit: project support and artistic merit: project impact.

Note: Although grant recipients are listed with their organizations’ base location, the population they reach may be outside of their immediate community — often in rural and underserved parts of the state. Priority for funding was given to projects that primarily impact schools in one or more of the following categories: Title 1 participation; location within a county with more than 16.9 percent of the population experiencing poverty; or location in a rural community.

Organizations receiving FY2021 Arts Learning grants, and their project descriptions, are:

Caldera, Portland

To support long-term art- and environmental-based mentoring for about 350 youth from underserved communities annually via partnerships with 11 Oregon schools.

Community Arts Project, Cloverdale

To support Art Literacy/art education for about 410 elementary school students at no cost to their parents.

Fishtrap Inc, Enterprise

To support in-school and summer creative writing instruction for Eastern Oregon Youth.

Hand2Mouth, Portland   

To support Student Voices: Theatre Education Workshops for Youth at no cost to students.

Lane Arts Council, Eugene

To support Creative Link, an arts integration program pairing teachers with artists to co-develop art curricula in two Lane County school districts.

Literary Arts Inc., Portland

To support activities that empower students through storytelling by hosting up to 45 writing residencies at 11 Multnomah County high schools.

Miracle Theatre Group, Portland

To support STEAM residencies in Woodburn School District, with 48 in-person or virtual contact hours at Nellie Muir and Valor Middle Schools.

OK You Inc, Portland

To support students in engaging their creativity to navigate anxiety through a partnership with three Title 1 schools in Portland Public Schools.

Oregon Ballet Theatre, Portland

To support the OBT LAB project for 500 students at two low-income schools, including the creation and incorporation of new digital dance resources.

Oregon BRAVO Youth Orchestras, Portland

To support more than 300 hours of rigorous, instrumental ensemble instruction for about 200 students at six priority schools in North Portland.

Oregon East Symphony, Pendleton

To support 62 hours of afterschool string instrument instruction (violin, viola, cello) for fourth- and fifth-grade students in the Pendleton area.

Portland Youth Philharmonic Association, Portland

To support improved musical, academic and social-emotional outcomes for 68 band students in low socioeconomic status schools via year-long professional coaching while building participating teachers’ sustainable capacity to teach those instruments.

Rogue World Music, Ashland

To support 80 hours of music instruction for children, developing musicality as a life skill through cooperative singing, movement, body percussion and play.

Ross Ragland Theater, Klamath Falls

To support the Theater’s Youth StARTS program, providing comprehensive, integrated classroom-based arts education for K-6th graders throughout the district.

The Circus Project, Portland

To support an arts learning exchange between The Circus Project and the George Middle School Unified program to provide circus arts learning opportunities to students with disabilities.

The High Desert Museum, Bend

To support Kids Curate, a meaningful, year-long education program that provides 50 hours of engaging arts learning experiences for underserved students.

Umpqua Valley Arts Association, Roseburg

To support 180 hours of visual arts instruction for children in grades 1-5 in 15 Douglas County schools, helping teachers integrate hands-on art lessons into their curriculum.

Wordcrafters in Eugene, Eugene

To support creative writing residencies through two 30-week programs for incarcerated and at-risk students and an intensive two-week rural residency.

Young Audiences of Oregon Inc, Portland

To support arts-integrated residencies and teacher professional development at two high-needs middle schools serving 1,519 students and 73 teachers.



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