Ventura highlights Valley View arts and foreign language education grant

State Senator Rachel Ventura (D-43) speaks at the VNA Health Care facility ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2023 in Joliet.

State Sen. Rachel Ventura recently announced that Valley View School District 365U received a $40,000 grant to allow it to expand arts or foreign language classes.

“Whether it be for aid in teacher planning or professional development, I am pleased to see efforts in funding local schools districts like Valley View,” said Ventura, D-Joliet. “I commend the Illinois Art Council and Illinois State Board of Education for putting a focus on such an important program that will give thousands of students a better school experience and make memories for a lifetime.”

District 365U serves students from Bolingbrook; Romeoville; and portions of Plainfield, Lockport and Downers Grove. It serves the educational needs of about 18,000 students in 21 educational facilities.

The Arts and Foreign Language Education Grant is a joint initiative through the Illinois Arts Council Agency and the Illinois State Board of Education. Its purpose is to support arts and foreign language education in schools with an emphasis on ensuring that these areas become part of the school’s core curriculum.

The one-year planning assistance grant will aid in developing district-based plans for initiating, strengthening or expanding instruction in the arts or foreign language. A total of 15 districts are receiving planning grants totaling $367,480.

“The programs that this grant will help fund are crucial for young people to freely express themselves. Far too often, the arts are underfunded in schools,” Ventura said. “By broadening the array of offerings at local high schools, our students can flourish with new opportunities and programs that don’t receive enough recognition.”

To learn more about the Arts and Foreign Language Education Grant through IACA and ISBE, visit the Illinois Arts Council website.