HomeProgramsShakespeare in American CommunitiesGuidelines: Juvenile Justice

Guidelines: Juvenile Justice

  1. Read the following guidelines.
  2. Submit an Intent to Apply by December 7, 2018. This is required and nonbinding.
    You will receive an email after submitting the intent with a Case number to enter into the application form that will pre-fill information we have on file for your organization.
  3. Prepare your application.
  4. Complete and submit the application form by Thursday, February 14, 2019.

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, 2019 and July 31, 2020.

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 be a nonprofit 501c(3) organization, a unit of state or local government.

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

  • Applicant must be a U.S.-based theater company or organization 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.)

  • Applicant must have a DUNS (Dun and Bradstreet) number, which is free to obtain. Look up your DUNS number .

  • All applicants and potential sub-recipients of Federal funds must have and maintain an “active” registration in SAM.gov* (System for Award Management) until the application process is complete, and if selected, throughout the life of the award.

    SAM.gov registration is free but will take time to complete. Secure or renew your registration at least two weeks before the application deadline. You will need to opt-in to have it viewable in the public search. You may need to update your organization’s registration if you completed it for the Shakespeare in American Communities application in previous years. If you have issues completing your registration, please contact us at [email protected].

    If you need to renew your SAM.gov registration, sign-in and select “Register/Update Entity” in the left sidebar. Please remember to opt into the public search when updating your registration. Entities renewing or update their registration will be required to submit an original, signed notarized letter confirming the authorized Entity Administrator associated with the DUNS number before the registration is activated. As of June 29, 2018, when you log in you will be asked to create a Login.gov account. Your current SAM.gov username and password will no longer work.

  • Applicant must be able to comply with the Federal policies and legal requirements, statutes, and regulations as stated in the Assurance of Compliance .

Project requirements

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

  • Conduct programming between August 1, 2019 and July 31, 2020.
  • 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 justice system, qualifications of teaching artists, staff, or personnel and experience working with juvenile offenders, proven fiscal responsibility, and appropriate financial resources as evidence 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.