Skip navigation
Students painting a classroom mural

Essential Arts Education Grants for Schools

New for Fiscal Year 2024!

Essential Arts Education Grants for Schools is a new grant program of the Oklahoma Arts Council, replacing Small Grant Support for Schools. The grant program—offering a significant increase in funding for schools—reinforces the essential role of arts education during the school day.

Features of the new grant include:

Schools across Oklahoma can apply for Essential Arts Education Grants for eligible arts education programs that take place during the school day. Individual schools can apply for two grants of up to $5,000 per school year with a 10 percent cash match. Arts education plays an important role in improving academic performance. Studies show that students who have four years of high school arts education score higher on college entrance exams than students with little or no arts education. Arts education often improves performance in math and science, increases school attendance, promotes civic engagement, and decreases anti-social behavior. In addition, arts education supports the development of the whole child, builds skills, and offers students positive methods of creative self-expression.

Students receive the most benefit when they receive an arts education that is:


Program Objectives



Project Activity Dates 
August 1, 2023 - June 30, 2024 (Grant Period FY2024) 

Grant Amount 
Each school site is eligible to apply for up to two $5,000 grants per school year.
Match requirement: 10%. Matching funds may not be other Oklahoma Arts Council funds.

Informational Webinar 
To be announced
Accessibility: If you require accommodations to participate in the webinars or in-person information sessions, please contact us in advance at or (405) 521-2040.

Application Deadlines
July 15 deadline for projects beginning August 1–August 31
August 1 deadline for projects beginning September 1–October 31
October 1 deadline for projects beginning November 1–December 31
December 1 deadline for projects beginning January 1–February 29
February 1 deadline for projects beginning March 1–June 30

Who Can Apply?
Oklahoma PreK-12 public, charter, and private schools

What Types of Projects Can Be Supported?
In-school classes, residencies, and workshops led by a contracted teaching artist (frequency and duration may vary; focus should be on sequential hands-on learning) where each student receives at least six hours of sequential hands-on arts engagement.

What Expenses Are Allowable? 
Funding from Essential Arts Education Grants can be used to reimburse expenses such as teaching artist fees, select teaching artist travel expenses, contracted administration or technical fees, and consumable supplies. For more examples of allowable expenses and unallowable expenses, see the program guidelines (linked below).

Grants Process


Documents and Links

Grant Program Guidelines
General Grant Terms and Conditions
Grant System Login

How to Apply 

Step 1: If your school has not applied for an Oklahoma Arts Council grant within the past three years, please request access to the grant system. Once you have access, you can log in and apply for a grant. If you have questions about logging in, please contact our grants office at (405) 521-2040 or

Step 2: Once your organization has access to the grant system, your organization’s Grant Contact can log on and complete an application. Be sure to pay attention to application deadlines.  

Who to Contact for Help 

For questions about this grant program, contact Jennifer Allen-Barron, Arts Education Director, at or 405-521-2036.

For questions about grant system access, contact Martyna Sandoval at or 405-521-2040.

For questions about managing your grant award, contact Thomas Tran, Grants Director, at or 405-521-2041.