About Us

History of Arts Grow SC

Arts Grow SC began in 2021 as a three-year partnership between the South Carolina Department of Education and the South Carolina Arts Commission to help public schools address pandemic related learning loss with proven, arts-based learning initiatives. This landmark investment of $20 million of American Rescue Plan/ESSER 3 funds allowed Arts Grow SC’s network of partners to help schools and teachers fill learning loss gaps in the arts, use arts integration to remediate core subject areas,​ and provide summer and afterschool learning opportunities that leverage the arts in schools throughout the state.​

Investment in Arts Education
$ 0 M
Year Project
Goal to Serve Students in all SC Counties

Our Mission and Goals

The mission of Arts Grow SC is to provide equitable access to learning in and through the arts for South Carolina students.

The goals of Arts Grow SC are to:

How We Work

Arts Grow SC follows a collective impact model. Collective impact is a network of community members, organizations, and institutions who advance equity by aligning and integrating their actions to achieve population and systems level change. The components of collective impact are: a common agenda, open and continuous communication, mutually reinforcing activities, shared measurement systems, and a backbone organization. 

This creates a model for sustainability, activating the strengths of the SC Department of Education, the SC Arts Commission, partnering organizations, schools, and districts.

Within the collective impact model, activities primarily include:
  • Grants
  • Direct programs
  • Professional learning
  • Resource network
  • Digital services
  • Regional arts hubs
Diagram of the Collective Impact Model

Funding Information

For the creation and first three years of Arts Grow SC, funding was provided by The American Rescue Plan, passed by the U.S. Congress and signed into law March 11, 2021 by President Biden.

The American Rescue Plan included $121.9 billion in Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief funds (ARP ESSER), that has been administered through the U.S. Department of Education to state educational agencies. The South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE) received $2.1 billion in ARP ESSER funds, where ninety percent of these funds were distributed to school districts. The remaining funds were to be used for state-level activities to address learning loss, summer enrichment programs, and comprehensive after school programs. Of these funds, the SCDE approved $20 million for the SCAC to implement Arts Grow SC programs and partnerships over the course of the next three years.

In July of 2024, Arts Grow SC transitioned out of ARP/ESSER 3 funding. Primary funding for programs and services is provided through the SC Arts Commission. The SC Arts Commission receives funds from the National Endowment for the Arts, the South Carolina State Budget, and the Education Improvement Act.