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Crayola and NAESP Award Grants to 20 Schools, Support Arts-Infused Education

Champion Creatively Alive Children grant funds arts-infused initiatives in K-8 schools

Easton, PA. (November 15, 2017) —Crayola®, in collaboration with the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP), awards the Champion Creatively Alive Children (CCAC) grant each year to support arts-infused education in K-8 schools. For the 2017-18 school year, Crayola and NAESP have awarded the CCAC grant to 20 schools across the U.S. Each recipient received a $2,500 grant and $1,000 value in Crayola products to implement art integration projects in their school.

To apply for the CCAC grant, principals propose a plan to infuse the arts into everyday instruction. With the grant funding, this year’s recipients will execute projects such as incorporating art therapy for refugee students and using art to promote connectedness for students of military families.

The 2017-18 CCAC grant winners are:

  • Bobby Riley of Integrated Arts Academy, Burlington, VT
  • Bonita Samuels of Marshall School, South Orange, NJ
  • Brian Knippers of Corinth Elementary School, Corinth, MS
  • Carla Furlow of Montpelier Elementary School, Laurel, MD
  • Cynthia Emerson of Vero Beach Elementary, Vero Beach, FL
  • Deb Gaudreau of Willard School, Sanford, ME
  • Diane Chamberlain of Fort River Elementary, Amherst, MA
  • Ed Elsea of Lee Expressive Arts Elementary, Columbia, MO
  • Elizabeth Hayes of Ticonderoga Elementary, Ticonderoga, NY
  • Holly Dalby of Circle Cross Ranch STEM Academy, San Tan Valley, AZ
  • Mary Moss Brown of Charlotte Lab School, Charlotte, NC
  • Mary Swazey of Belle Chasse Academy, Belle Chasse, LA
  • Matthew Langsdale of Otter Lake Elementary, White Bear Laker, MN
  • Patti Lee Barnes of Spring Ridge Elementary, Frederick, MD
  • Roger Havens of Franklin Elementary School, Wadsworth, OH
  • Theo Quinones of Governor Wolf Elementary, Bethlehem, PA
  • Valerie Williams of Mary Pottenger Elementary School, Springfield, MA
  • Vicki Trujillo of Cerbat Elementary, Kingman, AZ
  • Wanda Carroll-Williams of Joseph Pye Elementary School, Ladson, SC
  • Dr. Wendy Kerr of Live Oaks Elementary, Fallbrook, CA

“Art is an essential part of a well-rounded education. Art integration provides positive benefits to students: improved attendance, fewer discipline issues, increased test scores, and higher levels of family engagement,” said Cheri Sterman, director of education at Crayola. “Our collaboration with NAESP provides greater access to art integration as an instructional strategy, which improves academic achievement and develops workforce readiness skills including the ability to thinking creatively, take risks and problem-solve.”

Grant recipients from the 2016-17 school year have already made strides in arts-education implementation. With the support of the CCAC grant, 2016-17 recipients have:

  • Used art to explore social justice issues and consider the power of art to persuade, build awareness and inspire activism.
  • Provided teachers with art-integrated professional development focused on Da Vinci’s model of merging academics, action and art.
  • Partnered with local art museums to study design thinking.
  • Blended subjects such as science, writing and art by studying the power of an image as original source material.
  • Partnered with local university architecture departments and engineering design firms to highlight real-life examples of building a culture of creativity.

“Principals understand the value of using arts-infused education to ignite deep learning for all students,” said Dr. Earl Franks, executive director at NAESP. “We’re thrilled to work with Crayola and the Champion Creatively Alive Children grant program to provide schools with this unique opportunity to build creative capacity. These schools’ grant proposals are innovative approaches to establishing creative leadership and demonstrating promising practices that inspire others.”

To learn more about this year’s CCAC grant recipients and the grant program, visit

About Crayola Education

Crayola LLC, based in Easton, Pa. and a subsidiary of Hallmark Cards, is the worldwide leader in creative expression, offering professional training programs and products that drive creativity in education. Crayola Education provides professional learning to teachers and coaches on creative leadership, multi-literacies, and STEAM to prepare students with 21st century skills that hinge on creativity. By providing educators with resources and professional learning, Crayola Education bolsters district-wide creative capacity to increase student engagement and improve learning outcomes. For more information, visit

About the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) 
Established in 1921, NAESP serves elementary and middle school principals in the United States, Canada, and overseas. NAESP leads in the advocacy and support for elementary and middle-level principals and other education leaders in their commitment to all children. For more information, visit

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