Saturday, June 15, 2013

Impact Austin Grants $100,000 to Zach Theatre Education Programs

Zach Theatre Austin TXZACH Theatre has been awarded a $100,000 grant from Impact Austin — a nonprofit organization that pools annual donations from members and gives grants to local, worthy causes selected by its members — to fund the expansion of ZACH’s Arts Across the Curriculum program.

Impact Austin will hold an award presentation for ZACH on Monday, June 17 at noon at the Topfer Theatre’s People’s Plaza, 202 S. Lamar Blvd. at W. Riverside Dr. The presentation is open to the public.

ZACH Theatre’s Arts Across the Curriculum is an arts integration and professional development program that trains teachers to use creative drama and theatre techniques to actively engage students in language arts, science, history, and math curricula.

Impact Austin’s grants are awarded in five focus areas: culture, education, environment, family, and health and wellness. ZACH’s Arts Across the Curriculum program was the grant winner for the culture category, which encompasses programs and projects that cultivate, develop, educate and improve the cultural climate in the Greater Austin area.

For the past two years, ZACH Theatre, with support from partner organizations mindPOP, Austin ISD and The Kennedy Center, has successfully piloted the AAC program in three Title I Austin ISD elementary schools and 15 classrooms. The Impact Austin grant will allow ZACH to expand its AAC program from three Title I schools to 16, from 15 teachers to 60, and from 300 at-risk students to 1,500 over the next two years. The grant will also fund the addition of a dedicated program coordinator, salaries for teaching artists, and an in-depth third-party quantitative and qualitative evaluation conducted by UT to measure the effectiveness of the program so it can further be refined and expanded.

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