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PTA April 15, 2011
    For Immediate Release
National PTA Awards
Arts Enhancement Grants
Three Recipients Across the Country Share Honors

ALEXANDRIA, VA. (April 15, 2011) –National PTA® recently awarded the 2010-2011 Mary Lou Anderson Reflections Arts Enhancement Grants—a matching grant program for student-centered arts education programs.

“Arts programs are becoming scarce in some communities across the country. Yet, research continues to show that a child performs better academically when they’re able to express themselves artistically. That’s why National PTA is proud of these PTAs that are furthering the educational experiences of students,” said Charles J. “Chuck” Saylors, National PTA President.

The objective of the grant program is to enhance arts education for students in the classroom or in other learning environments through activities, materials, new technologies, techniques, and visiting artists programs. This year’s grantees are:

  • Bailey's Elementary School PTA in Falls Church, Va., will work through their arts integration project, called Art Reach, which is tied to academic lessons and serves as a bridge between the school, families and community through a two part approach: murals on school walls and cultural art on school fences. To develop the murals, students will work alongside teachers, community volunteers and local artists to create murals as a legacy of their educational achievement. The school fences will be adorned with inspired artwork created by students who have interviewed their family members about their journeys. 
  • Grant Elementary PTA in Tacoma, Wash., will create an art program, called Art Attack, which heightens families’ understanding of what arts-infused education means and helps children become more engaged and curious learners. Artists-in-residence will teach students about writing, dancing, music and the relationship between art, science and history. A Brazilian drummer will work with Pre-K and 1st graders to make music. Students from 2nd through 5th grade will rotate through three different arts-oriented mini-courses including Native American dancing, Chinese character drawing, bookbinding, improvisational theatre and hip hop dancing. All students will see a glass blowing demonstration by the Tacoma Art Museum’s mobile hot shop.

  • Ridgely Middle School PTA in Lutherville, Md., will introduce students to the world of photography through a multi-week class with a professional photographer. Students will learn about the history of photography as both an art form and a way of recording history.  They’ll learn and implement compositional techniques and will photograph portraits, landscapes, still-life set-ups and action shots.  Students will have a keepsake portfolio at the end of the program.

The grant recipients were chosen based on the quality of the proposed program and their anticipated outcomes. Special consideration was given to programs centered on helping at-risk children whose environmental, familial, and/or socioeconomic situation may affect their academic success or ability to learn.

The grant program complements PTA’s long-standing commitment to quality arts education in public schools by providing funds to local PTAs to establish or enhance school arts programs in one or more arts areas: visual arts, photography, music (including dance), and literature (including theater). Local PTAs must submit complete applications and provide funds that match the amount they are requesting from the National PTA.

For more information about additional PTA arts enhancement programs please see the PTA Reflections website at

About National PTA
National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of parent involvement in schools. PTA is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit association that prides itself on being a powerful voice for all children, a relevant resource for families and communities, and a strong advocate for public education. Membership in PTA is open to anyone who wants to be involved and make a difference for the education, health, and welfare of children and youth. 

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