Community Arts Schools and Conservatories
Community Arts Schools and Conservatories is a pilot program that provides operating support to high quality, established community arts schools and conservatories that are nonprofit, provide rigorous, structured arts learning programs offered by professional faculty, and whose programs are open to all interested learners.
The goal of the Community Arts Schools and Conservatories program is to provide every Minnesotan with the opportunity to participate in rigorous, structured arts learning programs.
Who can apply
Community arts schools or conservatories that provide rigorous, structured arts learning programs offered by professional faculty that are open to all interested learners. The school or conservatory must be exempt from taxation under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or be hosted within a parent, nonprofit, tax-exempt institution. The applicant school or conservatory must have annual operating expenses of at least $50,000, and not more than $160,000, when averaged over its two most recently completed fiscal years.
Arts Board Operating Support grantees are not eligible to apply.
Community Arts Schools and Conservatories grants include two components: formula funds and merit funds. The formula funds amount will vary, depending on the overall number of grantees and total dollars in the pool, and is based on the organization's two-year average operating expenses. The merit funds amount may be up to ten percent of the organization's operating expenses for the most recently completed fiscal year.
Community Arts Schools and Conservatories grants are two-year operating grants.
FY 2015 Application Deadline
see calendar page
The Arts Board will begin using WebGrants, a new online grants management system during the FY 2014 grant round. Applicants need to register in advance, to create an account and set up a user ID and password.
Two online tutorials are available to acquaint users with the WebGrants system:
Applicants who are new to the Community Arts Schools and Conservatories program may want to view an online presentation that gives a more detailed overview of the program. The presentation is available in two formats: MS Powerpoint or PDF.
To view the PowerPoint file: open the file; select “slide show” from menu; select “From Beginning.” Click anywhere on the screen to advance to the next slide. Make sure the speaker volume is on. If you do not have PowerPoint on your computer, you can download a free PowerPoint viewer from Microsoft.
To view the PDF file: open the file; scroll down to advance slides. To view the speaker notes as text, hold the cursor over the speech bubble icon. Note that this text transcript of audible speaker notes is only visible in the Adobe Reader, not inside of a Web browser or Apple Preview. The PDF version has no audio component.
Fiscal year 2015 materials and links will be available six to eight weeks before the application deadline. Previous materials are shown below for reference only.
FY 2014 Overview and Instructions (PDF)——all applicants should read this document thoroughly before beginning the application.
If you have questions or need assistance
If you have questions about the content of the application form or narrative, please contact:
Connie Skildum, program officer
If you have questions about financial forms or required financial documents, please contact:
Dave White, director, finance and grants administration
If you have questions about the technical aspects of the application forms, or questions about electronic submission, please e-mail the Arts Board at:
You may also call the following staff, but e-mail is preferred.
Tom Miller, project manager
Sean Kelly, Webmaster
All staff can be reached toll-free at (800) 866-2787.