TISD fine arts to receive annual grants

Published on Saturday, 19 April 2014 23:05 - Written by From Staff Reports

A new endowment fund will benefit the fine arts in Tyler ISD.

The TISD Foundation on Thursday announced the establishment of the Frances Cowan Gibson Tyler ISD Fine Arts Endowment to benefit under-funded and innovative art projects in the district, according to a TISD news release.

The gift to the foundation from the Frances Cowan Gibson Charitable Lead Trust will total more than $580,000.

The endowment, created through a partnership between the TISD Foundation and the East Texas Communities Foundation, will provide annual grants to the school district’s fine arts department.

TISD Foundation Executive Director Maya Bethany and director Marc Loredo presented an oversized check in the amount of $12,000 to TISD Fine Arts Director George Faber, Superintendent Gary Mooring and the board of trustees during a board meeting on Thursday. This was the first grant from the endowment.

Mrs. Gibson died in April 2012. Her family said they would like their “mother’s love of music, education and the city of Tyler to serve as an example while inspiring others to contribute,” according to the news release.

Ms. Bethany said the generous gift will help the district reach children through the valuable teaching methods of the arts.

“We do not see support for art programs as extra-curricular, but enhancement to the core curriculum,” she said. “The opportunities our children will have because of this contribution will allow their creativity to blossom in music, visual arts or the performing arts. We are honored she chose to support the Tyler ISD Foundation.”

Faber said the Fine Arts Department will use this year’s grant funds for its elementary strings programs, professional development to help teachers learn how to integrate the arts into their subject area, and to help purchase software for innovative music programs on both high school campuses.

Faber said through the years, the arts have always been the mechanism that helps to boost the whole child.

“We will use this to help as many students and teachers to have experiences in the arts as we possibly can,” he said.

The TISD Foundation is a nonprofit organization that provides funds to support unfunded or under-funded innovative classroom projects and programs in TISD. The foundation also recognizes academic excellence in teaching and student achievement, according to the news release. No tax dollars are used in fulfilling the foundation’s mission.