Leonore Annenberg School Fund for Children

Leonore Annenberg

The Leonore Annenberg School Fund for Children provides educational resources to United States elementary schools in which at least nine out of ten students are living in poverty. Supporting the well-being of children is key to the well-being of our nation, Leonore Annenberg established the fund to make a positive difference in the lives of those who are most disadvantaged. The resources must be of immediate and direct value to, and be available for use by, the children. 

Recipients have used the support to purchase items as basic as books, playground equipment, and computers as well as to create a music program and a science laboratory. The funds help catalyze positive changes both within the schools and in the surrounding communities; among the projects are new literacy and mentor programs, which benefit local youth as well as their families.

CAE has a long-standing partnership with the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania, which distributes the funds to schools in New York City, Houston, and South Florida as well as in high-poverty rural areas and other parts of the country. CAE is honored to partner with the Annenberg Public Policy Center on this project, identifying New York City schools in need of educational resources, specifically in the arts.

Nominations are made on an invitation-only basis, by partner organizations with a long-standing relationship to the donor. All grants are approved by a Selection Council consisting of philanthropy executives and the leaders of Annenberg-named organizations and institutions. Unsolicited requests are not entertained.

The Center for Arts Education is pleased to announce that P.S. 1 X: Courtlandt School and P.S. 33 X: Timothy Dwight School of the Bronx have each been awarded this prestigious $100,000 grant for the 2011-2012 academic year. 

 A student dance performance is showcased  on the video screen that greets visitors at PS 1XP.S. 1 X is located in New York’s South Bronx, where inadequate infrastructure, high unemployment and persistent crime are obstacles to sustaining effective public education. The area is one of the poorest congressional district in the United States; 49% of its children live below the poverty line, and 97% are classified by the federal government as being “at risk” because of economic hardships. Despite these external challenges, P.S. I X provides a cheerful, spacious and safe learning environment where technology and arts programming combine to support differentiated instruction and project-based learning. Music classes, however, currently take place in a basement space that is neither sound proof nor adequately ventilated.  With this funding, P.S. 1 X will create a soundproof music room and broadcasting facility outfitted with musical instruments and digital recording equipment. Students will learn music and audio production, enabling them to reflect on developing skills and share their work with the community.

Students at PS 33 X prepare for a holiday concert
P.S. 33
X serves an area of the Bronx where 37% of children live beneath the poverty line and poor economic conditions place 98% of the school’s students “at risk” of failure. Limited English Proficient (LEP) students comprise 34% of the enrollment -- more than five times the New York State average.  Currently, the school operates at 165% capacity; however, P. S. 33 overcomes these challenges and maintains an exemplary testing record, earning an “A” rating from the DOE two years in row. Principal Lynette Santos attributes much of the school’s success to arts-rich learning, which includes sequential arts instruction and partnerships with cultural organizations that integrate art with other content areas. Currently, P.S. 1 X’s auditorium is used for dance, drama and music studies, assemblies, academic instruction, professional development sessions, parent meetings, and community gatherings. The space is in desperate need of renovation. Thanks to The Fund, P.S. 33 X will upgrade its auditorium as well as convert an adjoining area to a discrete exhibition space for students and visiting artists.

Past New York City recipients identified by CAE include: P.S. 191K: The Paul Robeson Elementary School (2010-2011), C.S. 200M: The James McCune Smith School (2010-2011), C.S. 300X: The School of Science and Applied Learning (2009-2010) and P.S. 123K: The Sudyam School (2009-2010).

PS 191   PS 191