Foundation 65 to provide $275,000 in literacy, arts grants


Daily file photo by Patrick Svitek

The Joseph E. Hill Early Childhood Education Center holds the offices for Evanston/Skokie School District 65. Foundation 65, a nonprofit that supports the district, announced it would provide $275,000 in grants this year.

David Fishman, Print Managing Editor

Foundation 65, a nonprofit organization that serves Evanston/Skokie School District 65, announced Tuesday plans to provide $275,000 in literacy and arts grants for the upcoming academic year.

The foundation, which previously received support from Northwestern, has invested nearly $2.5 million in the district over the past decade, according to a news release. This year’s grants will focus on K-1 literacy instruction and “impact every school within District 65.”

Through a partnership with the Evanston Public Library, for example, the foundation will provide funding for all District 65 kindergarteners to visit the library and receive a membership card.

“This program gives emergent readers the opportunity to be introduced to the Library’s Children’s Room and includes a parent incentive piece to invite families to return to the Library following the school visits,” the release said.

Among this year’s grant recipients is “Evanston Speaks: Youth Poetry Project,” a three-year program that aims to create an “all Evanston slam,” according to the release. Money from Foundation 65 will help the project expand beyond its pilot program at Chute Middle School and create “opportunities for students to write, share and perform their poetry.”

In addition to longer-term programs, the foundation will provide responsive grants of up to $3,000 for five one-year projects. Many of these projects — like a student workshop series with Mudlark Theater at Haven Middle School — have an arts-focused curriculum.

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Twitter: @davidpkfishman