For Schools

Download our full Arts Education menu here.


Bring the Arts to You

Join 37 other schools serving more than 18,000 students in Santa Cruz County by bringing arts education into your classroom. From financial resources to trusted teaching artists, we’ll connect you with everything you need to make your school a more inspiring, colorful learning environment. 

Get Financial Support

Access the funding you need to kickstart your school’s arts education program. When you receive a SPECTRA matching grant up to $2,000, you’ll gain immediate access to a network of inspiring community creativity, funding, and partnerships to bring into your classroom. Apply with a simple, single-page application. 

We prioritize our funding based on equity and where we can make the greatest sustainable impact. Our number one priority goes to schools where high percentages (60-100% unduplicated) students are students of color, English Language Learners, on free and reduced meal plans, and are foster youth. The application period for 2020-21 SPECTRA Matching Grants launches May 1, and closes Friday, September 11, 2020 at 5 pm.

Download the guidelines here: 20-21 SPECTRA guidelines – ENGLISH / 20-21 Guía de Asistencia Técnica para beca SPECTRA – Español

Access your application and create an account for next year:

SPECTRA Application Portal → 

Connect with Teaching Artists

Find the perfect artist for your needs through our Teaching Artist Directory. Every artist is hand-picked through a careful panel review process so that we can share the very best with you. You’ll discover everyone from musicians and mural painters to cartoonists and puppeteers– just sort by discipline, reach out to an artist directly, and add a dose of inspiration to your school day. 

Take your class to the next level with a teaching artist today:

Teaching Artist Directory →

Bring After School Arts to You

Keep your students engaged after school with dynamic arts education from a high-quality group of teachers from Mariposa Arts and SPECTRA. SPECTRA provides schools with the funding and teachers you need to take your arts education to the next level. 

Serving more than 2,000 students annually, Mariposa Arts teaches elementary school students to express themselves, creatively problem-solve, make healthier choices, and positively affect their communities. Plus, Mariposa Arts empowers their high school student teachers to develop career skills as they teach alongside professional teaching artist mentors. 

Bring Mariposa Arts into your school:

Contact Arts Education Director Sarah Brothers at (831) 475-9600 x18 or

Creative Classes, Powerful Results

The data is out there. When we activate our classrooms with creative resources, students thrive. It’s one more approach that helps infuse young minds with the important lessons we’re all trying to make sure they carry with them beyond our walls.  

When woven in with public education, the arts:

  • Awaken the full potential of every student
  • Break down barriers
  • Provide opportunities to express diverse cultural heritages
  • Promote the Common Core State Standards

“One child participating in SPECTRA has severe learning disabilities. She was thrilled to be in an art class. It gave her incredible self-esteem. All the children looked up to her because of the way she performed in art.”

–  Principal at Tierra Pacifica Charter School

“Mariposa Arts helped me find my voice and gain powerful life skills like public speaking and classroom management”

– Vianey, Mariposa Arts student teacher

Excited about a future where every student in Santa Cruz County learns with arts ed? Join the Arts Now Community, a group of local advocates working towards this future. 

For Advocates →