Home Programs Shakespeare in American Communities Guidelines: Juvenile Justice

Guidelines: Juvenile Justice

  1. Read the following guidelines.
  2. The Intent to Apply is due on December 6, 2019. This is required and nonbinding. This intent includes both opportunities. Please contact Christy Dickinson at 612.238.8019 if you have questions.
    You will receive an email after submitting the intent with an unique link that will be pre-filled with information we have on file for your organization.
  3. Prepare your application.
  4. Complete and submit the application form by Wednesday, February 12, 2020.

Arts Midwest invites proposals from theater companies and organizations across the nation to engage youths within the juvenile justice system with the works of Shakespeare through theater education programs between August 1, 2020 and July 31, 2021.

For the purpose of this program, juvenile offenders are defined as youths (18 years or younger) who have been found guilty in the juvenile justice system of committing a delinquent act and the system may include juvenile facilities or detention centers, educational schools/programs specifically for juvenile offenders or incarcerated youths, court-appointed programs, short- or long-term treatment centers, transitions centers, etc.

A theater company who is eligible for the Schools program may submit an application for the Juvenile Justice program if they meet the requirements. There must be no overlapping programming or costs between the applications and budgets.

Applicant eligibility requirements


  • Applicant must comply with federal eligibility requirements.

  • Applicant must have a minimum of two years’ experience partnering with the justice system to provide theater education programs.

  • Applicant must be a theater company or organization located in the U.S. and the Native nations that share this geography that compensates all professional performers and/or related or supporting professional personnel at no less than the prevailing minimum compensation. (This requirement is in accordance with the regulations issued by the Secretary of Labor in part 505 of Title 29 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Part 505 does not provide information on specific compensation levels.)

Project requirements

In order to fulfill the goals of Shakespeare in American Communities: Juvenile Justice, applicants must:

  • Conduct programming between August 1, 2020 and July 31, 2021.
  • Conduct educational programming exploring Shakespeare’s text through frequent contact over a significant number of visits. Examples of these activities may include workshops, discussions, seminars, and residencies.
  • Partner with the juvenile justice system to reach youths. This may include juvenile facilities or detention centers, educational schools/programs specifically for juvenile offenders or incarcerated youths, court-appointed programs, short- or long-term treatment centers, or transitions centers. The facilities must reach juvenile offenders are defined as youths (18 years or younger) who have been found guilty in the juvenile justice system of committing a delinquent act.
  • Engage a minimum of two teaching artists, staff, or personnel in theater education programming for this target population. Activities must be led by experienced teaching artists, staff, or personnel with strong credentials and experience working within the justice system.

Selection Criteria

Applicants are evaluated by an independent advisory panel composed of theater peers and experts. The following selection criteria will be used in the panel’s assessment of the application. A theater company’s past participation in the program is not considered in this evaluation.

Applicants will be selected based on:

  • The artistic excellence and merit of the project, including the content of the theater education programming, the intent to illuminate Shakespeare’s text for these youths, and the frequency of contact with this target population over a significant number of visits.
  • The feasibility to work with the justice system, including demonstrated capacity to partner with the justice system, ability to provide or adapt programming to reach juvenile offenders, and the adaptability of the programming to the practical barriers of partnering with the justice system.
  • The capacity and ability to carry out the project, including the organization’s evidence of the minimum of two years’ experience partnering with the justice system; organization’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion; qualifications of teaching artists, staff, or personnel and experience working with juvenile offenders; proven fiscal responsibility; and appropriate financial resources as evidenced in the budgets.

Selected organizations will be expected to carry out the project consistent with their proposal. If changes occur, they must be discussed and approved by Christy Dickinson at Arts Midwest.

Grant awards

Grant awards of $20,000 – $25,000 will be awarded to 6-10 applicants to support theater education programs that reach youths within the juvenile justice system. These awards will not require a nonfederal match of 1 to 1.

A theater company who is eligible for the Schools program may submit an application for the Juvenile Justice program if they meet the requirements. There must be no overlapping programming or costs between the applications and budgets.

These funds derive from Federal funds from the National Endowment for the Arts (CFDA #45.024: Promotion of the Arts_Grants to Organizations and Individuals). A theater company or organization may not receive this award and a direct grant from the National Endowment for the Arts or another Federal agency for the same project during the same or an overlapping period of support.

If selected, the organization will enter into a Grant Agreement with Arts Midwest. This agreement will outline the terms and conditions, including Federal regulations and project and crediting requirements of the Shakespeare in American Communities grant award.

Review process

All applications received by the deadline will be reviewed by Arts Midwest staff for completeness. The staff will contact you if there are any questions. Following the staff’s review, and email will be sent acknowledging receipt of your application and provide a PDF to review prior to being sent to advisory panel.