The Swedish Arts Council allocates grants to the country's cultural schools

Swedish Arts Council,
24 April 2024, Sweden

The Swedish Arts Council is now allocating this year's grants to 277 municipalities to strengthen the development of the country's music and arts schools. A total of SEK 95 million will be allocated to development initiatives for municipal arts schools, partly to individual municipalities' initiatives and partly to development initiatives where two or more municipalities collaborate.

The Swedish Arts Council has been commissioned by the Government to distribute development grants to music and arts schools. The grant is particularly targeted at activities for children and young people with disabilities, in sparsely populated areas and in areas with socio-economic challenges. Funds are also granted to implement initiatives to reach new target groups, to offer pupils opportunities for in-depth education and for activities specifically aimed at national minorities. 

The development grant makes it possible for the municipalities to reach children and young people who have not previously participated in cultural schools. This year, more than 80 per cent of the municipalities are applying for funding for activities aimed at new target groups. This may involve starting new subjects such as cultural camps during school holidays, orchestra activities and film, games and music production. Many municipalities also want to invest in open activities that do not require registration or fees. 

"By testing or introducing new art forms, new meeting places and new methods, participation is broadened and gives more children access to culture. The state subsidy is often the only opportunity for the arts schools to develop their activities. We are pleased that the government has chosen to extend the grant," says Kajsa Ravin, Director General of the Swedish Arts Council.  

It is clear that many municipalities want to develop their regular activities and devote themselves to in-depth teaching. In those cases, it can be about making the lessons longer, making them more advanced or supplementing with theory in the field of art. The development grant means a lot for the municipalities' opportunities to develop cultural schools and give more children and young people the opportunity to try out and practice cultural and artistic activities. This can be seen both in the follow-ups that are carried out and, not least, in the scope of the number of applications.  

"The municipalities are applying for almost three times as much funding as we have to distribute, so the need for development is great. We hope that the development grant to the country's music and arts schools can continue to contribute to increasing children and young people's opportunities for high-quality cultural education," says Kajsa Ravin. 

The applications include many initiatives to promote health and counteract mental illness among children and young people in cultural schools. Often, the initiatives are planned together with the school's organisation for student health. An example of initiatives with a focus on culture and well-being is the concept of dance for health. 

More investments in the School of the Arts

Next year, the Government's investment in leisure cards for children and young people will be introduced. The Swedish Arts Council will play an important role in the initiative to make it possible for more children and young people to engage in art and culture in their spare time. In preparation for the launch of the leisure card, the Swedish Arts Council has been tasked with strengthening the capacity of the municipal cultural school. The Swedish Arts Council will use SEK 32 million for the assignment.  

Further information

The Swedish Arts Council allocates SEK 95 million in development grants to municipalities that run music and arts schools. The music and arts schools applied for almost SEK 285 million. It is possible to apply to carry out initiatives in your own municipality and also to implement initiatives in collaboration with other municipalities. A total of 257 municipalities will share approximately SEK 80 million for investments in their own municipality. The investments made by municipalities in collaboration will share SEK 15 million and involve a total of 209 municipalities. In total, the grant will contribute to more art and culture for children and young people in 96 percent of the country's municipalities.