Hazelwood School District (HSD) students and staff contributed more than $12,000 to the Arts and Education (A&E) Council of St. Louis this year. This year’s fundraising goal was $10,000. HSD staff members have donated more than $90,000 to local arts organizations since 2000.
During second semester, thed district leads a three-week-long campaign using staff members as coordinators at every HSD school plus one at the HSD Learning Center. This year, McCurdy Elementary School collected more than $1,500. Six other schools – Cold Water Elementary, Hazelwood Southeast Middle, Jamestown Elementary, Larimore Elementary, Townsend Elementary and Twillman Elementary – each collected at least $500.
This year’s campaign theme is “pARTicipate – Keep Art Happening” and focused on establishing 100 percent participation at every school. School coordinators received weekly tips via e-mail, such as asking previous donors first, asking everyone on staff to donate and informing staff members about the payroll deduction option.
“I sold ‘casual day’ coupons for $5 each. Teachers were allowed to buy as many as they wanted, so some people bought as many as five for $25,” said Jennifer Hartranft, a second grade teacher who served as McCurdy’s campaign coordinator. “That allowed them to wear blue jeans for five days.
"I also gave reminders to teachers on the morning announcements at school.”
A donation of $50, $100 or $250 can have a profound impact on the life of a student. For example, a gift of $50 can provide:
- One pair of dance shoes for a student in need, or
- Tickets and transportation for five students to attend an arts education program, or
- Class supplies for one week of a summer art workshop for special-needs children, or
- 10 weeks of music-reading classes for one student
Donors who give at least $50 are eligible to receive the ARTS Card membership card. Present this card at the ticket counter or box office of participating organizations in order to receive the 2-for-1 or special discount being offered.
Organizations served by the council include the Florissant Fine Arts Council, Dance St. Louis, the Black Repertory Theatre, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Laumeier Sculpture Park, Circus Flora and the Center of Creative Arts – COCA, Springboard and Shakespeare Festival St. Louis.
With the funds raised through community partnerships, A&E annually assists more than 70 non-profit arts and arts education organizations. These organizations are then able to provide millions of experiences in music, theater, dance, film, literary arts, visual arts and outreach programs for both children and adults in the region. Founded in 1963, A&E is the only privately funded arts umbrella organization that serves a 16-county, bi-state metropolitan St. Louis region.
Throughout its 49-year history A&E has raised and distributed more than $100 million in support of the arts and arts education in the St. Louis metropolitan area – a significant contribution that directly affects the quality of life in our region. Each year, the arts provide more than $700 million to the St. Louis economy and impact more than 13,000 jobs.