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BPS Arts Expansion Initiative

The Boston Public Schools Arts Expansion Initiative is a multi-year effort to expand arts education in schools across the district. Launched in 2009, BPS Arts Expansion is focused on a coherent, sustainable approach to quality arts education for all Boston Public School (BPS) students. A true public-private partnership, BPS Arts Expansion has brought together local foundations, the school district, arts organizations, higher education institutions and the Mayor's Office. This collaboration of local leaders along with students, families, and school staff believe in the power of art to develop creative, engaged learners.


Our Goal

BPS Arts Expansion’s focus is to ensure that all BPS students, regardless of where they attend school, have access to high quality arts education.


Expanding Direct Arts Education
To reach 100% of all students in grades pre-K through Grade 8 through once weekly, year-long arts instruction and develop targeted strategies to meet the needs of high school students.


Building Capacity
At both central office and school levels to support systematic expansion of arts education throughout the district.


Strengthening Coordination
To build strong and sustainable partnerships between schools and the rich and diverse arts, cultural, and higher education institutions in Boston.


Progress to Date

2015 arts access data

Between SY 2009-2015, an additional 17,000 elementary, middle, and high school students experienced the arts during the school day. This significant progress was the result of both public and private investment in arts instruction, including the work of arts partners to provide arts education experiences during the school day. One of the primary tools of the Initiative has been the creation of the BPS Arts Expansion Fund that focuses on direct arts expansion in schools aligned with the Initiative goals. Arts organizations and schools can jointly apply for grant funding for their collaborative projects. To learn more about the fund and to apply for grants, please visit the EdVestors website.

Documents, Reports, and Case Studies

Arts Expansion Fund Grantee Lists

Our Mission

The BPS Visual and Performing Arts Department aims to provide excellence, access, and equity in arts education for all Boston Public Schools students. Learn more

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Get in touch

  • 443 Warren Street, Suite 6
    Dorchester, MA 02121
  • (617) 635-9653
  • (617) 635-9249