South Carolina Arts Commission

South Carolina Arts Commission

ABC Advancement Grants

Grant Information

Application Deadline Icon
Application Deadline

The application deadline for FY22 funding has passed. Information about FY23 funding is scheduled for release in Spring 2022.

Purpose Icon
To support ABC Certified Schools in their commitment to making the arts an integral part of the basic curriculum and daily classroom instruction

Who's Eligible Icon
Who's Eligible
ABC Certified Schools and FY21 ABC Advancement Grantees in Groups B & C

Funding Icon
Up to $15,000 per year

Grant Period Icon
Grant Period
July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022

Matching Requirement Icon
Matching Requirement
2:1 (grantee:SCAC)

About The ABC Project

ABC Advancement grantees, known as ABC sites, are part of the larger Arts in Basic Curriculum (ABC) Project, which is overseen by a steering committee of approximately 50 members including artists, educators, school administrators, representatives of higher education, business leaders, and governmental representatives.

To learn about the steps for becoming an ABC certified school, visit The ABC Project’s website.

About This Grant

The purpose of this South Carolina Arts Commission (SCAC) grant is to support ABC Certified Schools in their commitment to implementing standards-based arts curricula and to making the arts an integral part of the basic curriculum and daily classroom instruction.

ABC Advancement grants provide support for ongoing comprehensive planning, strategic projects, and implementation of standards-based arts education initiatives, including but not limited to artist residencies. As of Summer 2021, there are 71 ABC schools in South Carolina, some of which have been sites since the project’s inception.

New This Year

Beginning with FY22 funding, the ABC Advancement grant application process is designed to align with the rigorous certification/ recertification process that schools complete through the ABC Project. The primary task grant applicants are asked to complete each year is to collect and provide evidence of progress made toward the strategic plan they designed during the certification process. Schools can then pull directly from this collection of evidence when completing recertification at the end of each 3-year certification cycle.

Only ABC Certified Schools are eligible to apply for SCAC’s ABC Advancement Grants. To learn how to become an ABC Certified School, visit The ABC Project’s website.

  • Current (FY21) ABC Advancement grantees in Groups B & C are eligible for FY22 funding as they await their first formal certification cycle.
  • In accordance with federal government policy, all organizations - including (but not limited to) private schools, government entities, public school districts, and nonprofit organizations - must provide a valid DUNS number to receive an SCAC grant award.
    • Individual public schools may use their school district's DUNS number and do not need to register separately.

ABC Certification runs on a three-year cycle; ABC Advancement grants are awarded annually, with separate contracts issued each year. To be eligible for continued funding, existing ABC Advancement grantees must submit an application as part of each year’s Final Report.

All grant funded spending must be directly in line with goals detailed in your Arts Education Strategic Plan. As relevant to the goals of each individual school’s strategic plan, ABC grant funds may be used to support ongoing comprehensive planning, arts and arts-integration professional development, and the implementation of standards-based arts education initiatives, including but not limited to artist residencies.

If you are hiring artists

Starting in Fiscal Year 2022 (July 2021), SCAC Arts in Education grant recipients must use members of the S.C. Arts Directory for grant-funded group lectures, demonstrations, performances, classroom residencies, and short-term arts teaching experiences. Artists labeled as Certified Teaching Artists on the Directory have been additionally vetted by SCAC through the submission of sample lesson plans, recorded teaching samples, and letters of recommendation; we encourage but do not require grant-funded teaching artist residencies to employ Certified Teaching Artists. Additionally, Arts Access SC Teaching Artists have trained with Arts Access SC to provide children, youth, and adults with disabilities quality arts experiences. Note: Schools should check with their district office about policies related to hiring artists, arts organizations, and teaching artists.

  • ABC Advancement grantees are expected to participate in the broader ABC network, sending representatives to meet with colleagues from other current and former sites for professional development days during the school year.
  • Any activities carried out within this grant must align with state guidelines regarding COVID-19.

May 17, 2021

Note: This deadline applies to both new applicants and existing grantees. All current (FY21) ABC Advancement grantees must submit an application as part of their FY21 Final Report by the deadline to be eligible for FY22 funding.

Applications may be submitted until 11:59 p.m. (Eastern Time) on the deadline date. However, please be aware that staff members will not be available to assist you with questions or technical difficulties after SCAC closes at 5 p.m. that day.
Grant Period

July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022

Funding Range

Up to $15,000 per year

Awards may vary from year to year and are contingent on availability of funds.

Matching Requirements

2:1 (grantee:SCAC)

Each dollar awarded must be matched with $2 cash. No in-kind expenses are allowed as part of the applicant’s match in this category.

Funds from another SCAC grant may not be used as matching funds.

How to Apply

Applications are accepted through our grants portal, which uses the Foundant platform. For frequently asked questions, registration instructions, and other helpful information, we highly recommend visiting the Grants Portal FAQbefore you begin working in the system.

You are urged to consider the Review Criteria (detailed in the “Review Process” section of these guidelines, under “After You Apply”) as you prepare your application materials. These criteria will be used to evaluate your application and determine the funding of your proposal.

The applicant must have an active account in our grants portal.

  • If you have previously used Submittable to apply for other SCAC grants or programs, please note that the grants portal is a different system. Your Submittable credentials will not work; you will need a grants portal account to apply for this grant.
  • If you have used the grants portal as both an artist and as a contact for a school or organization, be sure you log on with the correct account to apply for this grant.

Current (FY21 Grantees)

Your application for FY22 funding will be part of your FY21 Final Report. You will receive instructions with notification that your Final Report is ready for use.

New Applicants
  1. Follow the “Apply” link below. The grants portal will open in a new browser tab or window.
  2. Log on, then click the “Apply” link at the top of your Applicant Dashboard.
  3. In the upper right corner of the “Apply” screen, enter the access code provided by SCAC, and click the “Enter Code” button.
  4. Your screen should refresh with “ABC Advancement” as the only available grant application shown.
  5. To begin your application, click the “Apply” button to the far right.

Important Notes:

  • Until you enter your access code, you will not see ABC Advancement in the list of available grant applications. Please do not start an Arts Education Project (AEP) grant application instead! Enter your access code as instructed, and your screen will refresh with the ABC Advancement application shown.
  • If you would like to preview the application before you log in, you may visit the “Apply” page, enter your access code as instructed, then click the “Preview” button when the ABC Advancement application information is shown onscreen.
  • If you have already begun your FY22 ABC application, do not click the “Apply” button again. Follow the instructions on the screen to return to the application you’ve already started.

After You Apply

The Grants Team will review submitted applications for completeness and compliance with guideline and application requirements. Staff will then develop recommended award amounts based on the published Review Criteria, the availability of funds, and the number of ABC Certified Schools. Recommendations will be presented to the Board of Commissioners, which makes final award decisions. Award notification is expected after the June 2021 board meeting, pending completion of the state budget process.

Review Criteria

ABC Certified Schools that complete the application process, remain in good standing with the ABC Project, and demonstrate fidelity to their arts education strategic plan will be recommended for funding.

SCAC staff will review applications to confirm that:

  • The applicant meets the eligibility requirements.
  • The proposed spending priorities align with the stated purpose of this grant category.
  • The proposed use of funds meets the requirements as stated in the grant guidelines.

If your application is funded, you (and your fiscal agent/receiver, if applicable) will enter into a contractual agreement with the South Carolina Arts Commission, and you must comply with all requirements stated in that contract. You will receive notification and instructions when your contract is available in our online grants management system. You must submit your completed Contract Packet, including signatures and other documentation as instructed, by the date indicated in the system. You must also complete all other assigned Follow Ups by the due date given.

Please note: Any significant revisions to grant-funded activities must be approved in writing, in advance, by SCAC.

Additional details about managing an SCAC grant are available on our agency website.

Grant Payments

Payment will be on a reimbursement basis only. If the applicant is part of a school district or is using a fiscal agent/receiver, payment will be made to the school district or fiscal agent/receiver.

An accurate Pay Request, listing only expenses allowable under the program guidelines for the certified time period, must be submitted in order to receive payment for the grant award.

Grantees in this category may be eligible for interim payments, with the final grant payment released upon receipt and approval of the grantee’s Final Report.

Final Report

ALL GRANTEES are required to file a Final Report at the end of the grant period. The Final Report Due Date is stated in the grant contract. Failure to submit an accurate and complete Final Report by the due date will result in cancellation of the award and repayment of any funds received. SCAC will not fund applicants who have outstanding Final Reports.

Note: ABC Certification runs on a three-year cycle, but ABC Advancement grantees are required to file a Final Report at the end of each annual grant period. Submission of the application portion of your annual Final Report is required to be eligible for a grant award the following year. The reporting process also prepares your school for recertification and allows SCAC to measure the impact of its grantmaking.

  • If you are seeking advisement before submitting an application, please contact Catherine Ntube (803.734.8694 |, Specialist for Arts Organizations & Education.
  • If you have submitted an application, and/or you have a current grant, please contact the Grants Team ( | 803.734.8695).
Grants Coaching

We also highly recommend a visit to our Grants Coaching webpage, for

Missed a group call or session? Look for the “Video” link to access a recording of that presentation.