Champion Creatively Alive Children

Creative Leadership Grants 2017

Thank you for your interest in the Champion Creatively Alive Children® grant opportunity! The 2017 program provides grants for innovative, creative leadership team building within elementary/middle schools. Beginning December 1, 2016, submit your application for the opportunity to receive a grant to help build your school's creative capacity. Each grant-winning school (up to 20 grants awarded) receives $2,500 and Crayola products valued at $1,000..

2017_18 CCAC Product Prize
 Actual product assortment may vary.

Here's how you can get started now...

  • Form a collaborative team to plan innovative ways of infusing creativity throughout the school.
  • Brainstorm a leadership program that will enrich the creative capabilities and confidence within the school community.
  • Plan how and who will lead this collaborative effort.
  • Complete the application.
  • Submit application by June 23, 2017 (the principal must be a member of NAESP).
  • Receive a gift — every Early Bird application submitted before midnight on Monday, June 5, 2017 will receive a Crayola product Classpack®.

In collaboration with the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP), Crayola offers up to 20 grants for schools in the United States or Canada. The applications will only be accepted from principals who are members of NAESP. If you are not the principal, please collaborate with your school's leader to develop the plan. The National Art Education Association encourages their members to partner with their school's principal and colleagues to generate grant proposals.

Schools who received this grant in 2016 will not be eligible to apply for a 2017-2018 grant. Instead, we urge those grant winners to become judges to help score new proposals. 2016 winners may apply again in 2018.

Applications should be sent to or faxed to 610-515-8781, Attn: Anita DeChellis. Applications will be accepted until 12:00 Midnight ET Friday, June 23, 2017.

Download your application today!

Review our judging rubric


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Briefly, what is the Champion Creatively Alive Children grant program? Up to 20 grants from Crayola help Creative Leadership teams identify and deliver innovative programs that inspire educators to increase art-infused education.   
  • What is the grant? Winning schools receive $2,500 and $1,000 worth of Crayola products to develop an art-infused, creative capacity-building, professional development program.
  • When will the grants be awarded? The grant funds will be distributed by end of October 2017. Finalists are contacted by late September 2017 and if they submit the required W9 form and signed photo permission forms for all students and faculty by October 6, 2017, they will be grant winners. Winners will be announced on and by October 16, 2017.
  • Do we need to complete the attached photo permission forms now? The attached photo permission form is required from Finalists. Finalists will be notified in late September 2017. All applicants must agree to obtain and submit signed photo permission forms for each student and faculty member, if they win. However the forms are only collected from Finalists.
  • What if my school does not have an art teacher? If the school does not have a certified Art Educator, the principal should collaborate with the person(s) designated within the school to teach the arts.
  • My principal is a member of the State affiliate association, but not the national (NAESP) - what do we do? The principal must also be a national NAESP member. Nonmember principals can join now at
  • What if my principal leaves during the 2017–2018 school year? The school's new principal should join NAESP.
  • Should our application focus on one of the "What if..." ideas outlined in the application form? No, we encourage an original "what if..." that addresses your school's needs and opportunities!
  • Does the application need to focus on developing a Creative Leadership Team and does this team need to build the school’s creative capacity? Yes. We look forward to the many innovative ways schools propose building the creative capacity of the school and increasing art-infused education. The plan should address specific needs and interests of your professional learning community. Consider how you’d create the team, craft a common vision, chart a strategic plan, embrace art-infused teaching strategies, build creative confidence, teach design thinking, align standards, embed creativity into the school culture, and use professional development, peer observation, and coaching to implement the plan.
  • What type of innovation is required? We urge that each grant application be original and not duplicate an idea that was funded in a prior year. The grant focus emphasizes innovation and capacity building so don’t rely on ideas from past grant winners as clues to funding future proposals. The focus is to embed a long-term, school-wide commitment to art-infused education.
  • Does it have to include visual art integration? Yes. While it is fine to include more than one art form into your proposal, there should be visual art integration as part of the creative capacity building plan. In addition to visual art, you may weave dance, music, theatre, art integrated ed tech, or media arts into your proposal.
  • What are examples of Creative Leadership capacity building? We encourage schools to consider their unique needs and interests instead of adopting others ideas. That said, it often sparks thinking to hear of some examples:
    • Providing a series of workshops delivered by teacher leaders, for teacher colleagues. For inspiration those teacher-leaders might attend a creativity leadership conference with the plan of delivering similar training to teachers, school-wide. Those teacher leaders might use the Champion Creatively Alive Children workshop and video series, available for free on that features the stories of prior year grant winners and showcases their promising practices.
      • If using those resources, the proposal should explain what innovative ways these are being utilized—go beyond basics to have your grant proposal stand out.
    • Partnering with an arts organization or a university or museum that has expertise in art integration. Jointly building the advocacy case for the capabilities to implement art integration could include co-teaching and coaching sessions so the teaching strategy gets embedded into classroom teachers' practices.
    • Organizing grade level and vertical professional learning teams who meet monthly to share art-infused lesson ideas and provide feedback to each other helps to implement art integrated cross-curricular lessons. 
    • Engaging parents in the Creative Leadership planning process and providing creativity theme books for faculty and parents to read and discuss in book club sessions. These conversations could be enriched by guest speakers/community members who specialize in the value of arts integration to increase student achievement.
    • Using grant funds for substitutes so art teachers and classroom teachers have more collaboration and co-teaching time
    • Helping teachers integrate hands-on visual art with ed tech apps, robotics, and other academic disciplines. A robust and innovative approach to interdisciplinary design thinking pedagogy can be the basis of staff workshops.

There is no one best way to do this. It needs to build your school’s creative capacity and identify a group of teacher leaders who will champion this effort within your school. The focus of Creative Leadership capacity building is to provide significant, sustainable professional development, not just a one-time speaker or a solo trip to a conference (if insights are not shared school-wide.) These are just examples. The funds could be used for other innovative ideas that foster art-based interdisciplinary learning.

  • Are Middle Schools eligible to receive a grant? Yes, if the principal is a member of NAESP.
  • Are Early Childhood Programs eligible to receive a grant? Yes, if the early childhood program is part of an elementary school program, and if that administrator is the principal of the elementary school and a member of NAESP.
  • Are private schools eligible to receive a grant? Yes, if they meet the other criteria, including their principal is a member of NAESP.
  • Are Canadian schools eligible? Yes, if they meet the other criteria, the grants are available to schools located in the United States and Canada. Only schools in these two countries are eligible.
  • What criteria are used to judge the applications? The scoring rubric is available online for applicants to review before submitting.