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Monday, December 3, 2012

Louisiana A+ Schools


Proven A+ Network Already in Operation in Oklahoma, North Carolina and Arkansas
LOUISIANA - December 3, 2012 - The George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts (GRFA) announces the launch of Louisiana A+ Schools (LAA+), an initiative to bring the proven success of the A+ Schools program to schools across Louisiana. 

"We are very excited to bring LAA+ to Louisiana because it is the first whole school arts-integrated reform initiative of its kind for our state," says Jacques Rodrigue, Executive Director of GRFA.  "We believe LAA+ has the potential to influence the way that all Louisiana students are taught."

Started in North Carolina in 1995, A + Schools is a research-based whole school network with a mission of nurturing creativity in every learner through an arts-integrated school network.  The network provides teachers with the essentials to think more creatively about how students can apply learning to the real world, and how they can present curricula to students in ways they learn best. Arts integration is achieved through continuous practitioner-led professional development, statewide support networks for teachers and administrators, and partnerships with parents, community resources, media and universities.

Extensive university research in A+ Schools reveals dramatic improvements including:
  • Elevated student achievement
  • Better student and teacher attendance
  • Decreased discipline problems
  • Stronger parental and community involvement
  • A more creative and enjoyable educational environment
In addition to North Carolina, A + Schools has been successfully implemented in Oklahoma and Arkansas and currently has over 120 schools in the network nationwide. The program's success in other states has prompted GRFA to team up with Oklahoma A+ Schools to bring A+ methods to Louisiana. 

GRFA hired Bethany France to serve as Director of Louisiana A+ Schools. As a champion for arts integration in Louisiana, Bethany France served under the Lieutenant Governor as the Director of Arts-in-Education for the Louisiana Division of the Arts from 2007 - 2012. In that capacity, she spearheaded arts learning initiatives and administered arts education grants to schools, nonprofits, and social service agencies statewide. Originally from Massachusetts, Bethany served as Assistant Director of Readmissions at The New England Institute of Art and Communications Boston. In 2002, she relocated to Louisiana to take part in Teach For America, where she taught second grade at Progress Elementary School in Baton Rouge. 

"I have two school age children," says Bethany France, Director of LAA+ Schools. "When I close my eyes and imagine the type of school that I want them to attend, that school is everything that the A+ method represents. I am excited that thanks to the Rodrigue Foundation, my children and many students in Louisiana will have the opportunity to benefit from the arts-integrated education that LAA+ will provide." 

Every school in Louisiana (pre-k through 12, urban, suburban, rural, public, private, parochial or charter) is invited to begin the application process to become an A+ school. LAA+ plans to add five to ten schools to the network each year. Schools must have 85% commitment from their faculty to apply and agree to a three-year implementation process involving whole school training each summer and customized professional development throughout the school year. Additionally, LAA+ is actively seeking corporations and individuals to serve as sponsors and partnerships with local arts organizations across Louisiana. 

For more information visit www.aplusla.org or contact the George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts at 504-324-9614 or bethany@georgerodriguefoundation.org.

George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts (GRFA) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization advocating the importance of the arts in the development of our youth through a variety of art educational programs.

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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Rodrigue Steinway Unveiled


To benefit LSU's School of Music and the arts in education initiatives of the George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts (GRFA), Louisiana artist George Rodrigue created a unique, iconic piece of art: The Rodrigue Steinway.

The piano, donated by the Hall Piano Company in New Orleans, is slated to be sold to the highest bidder, with half of the proceeds going to the LSU School of Music and the other half to GRFA.
Visit www.RodrigueSteinway.com to learn more!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

2013 Art Contest Launched


Louisiana high school students compete in an art contest for individual college scholarships and awards totaling $45,000

WHAT: The George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts (GRFA) announce its Call for Entries and 4th Annual Art Contest in partnership with the Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation (LRAEF).

The 2013 art contest theme is “Louisiana’s Culinary Heritage” and winning artwork will be used in a new cookbook published by GRFA and LRAEF. The annual GRFA scholarship art contest offers one-time college scholarships and awards totaling over $45,000 to the top ten (10) senior and top five (5) junior winners. The top winner will receive a $6,000 college scholarship. Since 2009, GRFA received 1,179 entries from 125 cities across Louisiana, awarding 52 students a combined $130,000 in college scholarships.

“Louisiana is an international culinary melting pot,” says George Rodrigue. “For centuries our food reflects a cultural history of adventurous cuisine. Uniquely, Louisiana yields seafood, wild game and produce, providing home cooks and chefs with a wide variety of fresh local ingredients. These indigenous resources complement Louisiana’s cultural ‘gumbo’ of French, Spanish, African, Italian and German flavors, influencing the food we ‘live to eat.’ Our beloved Creole and Cajun culinary traditions encourage a vibrant restaurant industry, impacting our state’s economy with jobs and tourism. We invite Louisiana’s high school juniors and seniors to create a work of art representing our state’s unique culinary heritage while honoring its festivals, dishes and local ingredients.“

A blind, two-part judging process focuses on three categories: interpretation of theme, creativity and design. GRFA requires that submissions be between 11 x 14 and 18 x 24 inches. Acceptable mediums include oil or acrylic paint, charcoal, pencil or graphite, watercolor, photography, mixed media or digital media. All Louisiana high school juniors and seniors are eligible, regardless of test scores, grade point averages or declared majors. GRFA regrets that we are unable to accept framed canvases or three-dimensional work.

WHEN: Taking applications now at www.rodriguefoundation.org/artcontest. Deadline February 20, 2013

WHO: All Louisiana juniors and seniors attending public and private high schools, home schooled students and GED students.

WHY: A Fall 2013 cookbook showcases winning artwork, including 100 recipes from Louisiana’s greatest chefs, with proceeds benefitting GRFA and LRAEF programs.

George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts (GRFA) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization advocating the importance of the arts in the development of our youth through a variety of art educational programs. www.georgerodriguefoundation.org

Louisiana Restaurant Association Education Foundation (LRAEF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization promoting the restaurant industry as a career choice to a current and future workforce. LRAEF offers scholarships and professional development while supporting state-approved foodservice programs. www.lra.org

For additional information, contact Emily Reimsnyder at emily@bondpublicrelations.com 

Monday, October 1, 2012

New Print Donation Print

Announcing the addition of "A Number One Tiger Fan" to our "Print Donation Program!"

Fundraise for your non-profit organization with a signed Blue Dog print by Louisiana artist George Rodrigue!

These prints are no longer for sale to the general public and can only be bought at charity auctions or raffles.

These prints are specifically designed as a fundraising vehicle for non-profits to raffle or auction directly to their supporters. They are not for sale in any Rodrigue Gallery, and are only accessible to the general public through a donation to a non-profit organization.
Originally produced to commemorate George Rodrigue's exhibit at the LSU Museum of Art in 2011, these prints raised over $1 million for the LSU Tiger Atheletic Foundation's education programs and GRFA.

Public sale of these prints ended after the 2011 football season.
Click here to learn more! 

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Summer Art Camps a Success!

We just wrapped up our 2012 Summer Art Camps!  In total we had 7 weeks of camps for ages 3-17. 

Click below to see a video summarizing our camps.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

2012 Art Contest Finalists Announced

Congratulations to all the junior and senior finalists!

On February 4, 2012, GRFA will award over $45,000 in college scholarships and art supplies to ten high school seniors and five juniors at an awards luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in New Orleans.

Click here to see all of the finalists!