Just Buffalo Partnership

    Literary Center & Olmsted School Empire State Partnership

    The Empire State Partnerships (ESP) are a cooperative effort of the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA, a state agency) and the New York State Education Department (NYSED).The Council and the State Education Department believe that the arts are essential and basic to every child’s education, and that cultural institutions are important resources to schools.

    • The ESP program supports cultural institutions that form partnerships with schools to create interdisciplinary programs that use the arts to illuminate and enrich the arts and other curriculum areas.  
    • Projects must serve students in grades pre-kindergarten through 12.
    • Support for these collaborative programs is offered in part through the ESP grants, with a match from both the cultural institution and the school.
    • The function of the ESP grant is to provide students with multi-session, long-term residencies with professional teaching artists over multiple grade levels, which address specific school-wide and classroom needs.
    • ESP partnerships are multi-year relationships that can lead to whole school involvement.  Professional Development for both Artists and Teachers is included in the grant, as is requirements for assessment of student learning and ongoing program evaluation.

    Our Partnership

    The Olmsted School and Just Buffalo Literary Center are in the planning year of an ESP School Wide Grant.  This year the partnership is defining itself as a collaboration, and planning some pilot programs, as it moves towards involving more teachers and students, and initiating projects at all grade levels that meet the learning needs of the students.   It is important to understand that an ESP partnership is a collaboration between the school and cultural organization, and between teachers and teaching artists, and its plans and projects should arise from the shared goals and outcomes of both partners.  Input from the teachers is essential to make the program work and allows the project to be established from the ground up.  Successful curriculum integration  and movement toward shared goals are achieved through the planning process, ongoing reflective practice, and professional development.