News Release

January 16, 2024

Arts NOW Grants Awarded to Nebraska Schools

Students across Nebraska will have access to projects in a wide range of arts through special grants awarded this year. The Arts NOW Grants are special one-time grant opportunities that were made possible by funding from the Nebraska Arts Council in partnership with the NDE and will provide $180,000 to 23 school districts impacting 79 schools throughout the state this spring. The projects will serve more than 20,000 students.

“We’re excited to offer support to our Nebraska schools, arts educators, and kids who learn and participate in arts education programs, ” said NDE Fine Arts Education Specialist Cody Talarico. The Arts NOW Grants differ from other arts grants by expanding what projects are available. “This program will allow items to enhance arts instruction that don’t necessarily qualify for our other grant programs,” said NAC program specialist Anne Alston. The Arts NOW Grant program reflects the creativity and innovation of arts educators, as well as the on-going need for arts education funding across the state.

The grant program is flexible and allows for projects in all the arts subjects including media arts, visual arts, dance, music and theatre. Some of the projects include printmaking in the visual arts classroom, world music drumming, learning lightning design and how to run light boards for theatre, the creation and installation of a school-wide public art mural, the study of world musical genres including instruments from various cultures, and the creation of visual art and collaboration into a theatrical performance creation among others.

Grants ranged from $1,341 to $20,000 with the average award of $7,816 and span all grade levels including elementary, middle, and high schools. Some projects are even across school divisions where high school students will work with middle school students to present to the elementary school.

More information on the grants is available at and at


Arts NOW Grants


David Jespersen
Public Information Officer, Nebraska Department of Education