For Immediate Release
February 15, 2012

State Board of Education Awards Grants to Bolster Local Arts and Foreign Language Programs

Seventeen districts receive grants totaling nearly $872,000 to improve student opportunities

SPRINGFIELD —The Illinois State Board of Education and the Illinois Arts Council Wednesday announced they have awarded nearly $872,000 to 17 school districts across the state for Arts and Foreign Language (AFL) Assistance Grants. In addition to general state education funds, these competitive state grants aim to support arts and foreign language programming in the classroom.

“These grants help districts promote a well-rounded education through arts and foreign language programming,” said State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch. “They are developing innovative programs that can be shared and perhaps replicated in other schools across the state.”

The AFL program, established in 2006, helps Illinois public school districts, public university laboratory schools, charter schools and area vocational schools with the development, maintenance, or enhancement of curricular programs in the Arts or Foreign Language. Funding is available for up to four years; one year of program planning and three years of program implementation.

A panel of experts in foreign language and the arts reviewed 39 new planning and implementation proposals before awarding 10 grants totaling $516,775. Another seven districts were awarded $355,123 in continued AFL implementation funding for Fiscal Year 2012. 

District plans range from using funds to establish a choral program to expanding a Chinese immersion program. The winning districts are listed below:

Amount Received

Planning Grants

Mundelein Consolidated High School District 120


World Language Curriculum

Meridian CUSD 223


K-12 Foreign language Curriculum

Harvard CUSD 50


Arts Program

Implementation Grants

Ina CSD 8


Fine Arts expansion

Lake Forest ESD 67


Mandarin immersion expansion

Cook County SD 130


Dramatic and Performing Arts Expansion

Sesser-Valier CUSD 196


High School Spanish

Schaumburg CCSD 54


Chinese Immersion Expansion

Fremont SD 79


Middle School Choral

CHSD 117 (Lake Villa)


New String Program

Continuing Implementation Projects

Bushnell Prairie City CUSD 170


High School Spanish

Consolidated SD 158 (Algonquin)


K-12 Music Education

Elmhurst CUD 205


World Language Program

Meridian CUSD 101


Visual and Performing Arts

Woodstock CUSD 200


Orchestra Program

Anna SD 37


Visual and Performing Arts

Peoria SD 150


World Drumming Curriculum