The Utah Arts Council is currently giving 50 to 60 grants a year for artists-in-residence in Utah schools, according to Jean Irwin, who is in charge of arts education for the council. That's down from 130 grants per year during the 1990s.
State funding has also been cut from the Professional Outreach Program in the Schools, which brings in the symphony, ballet, opera and the like. POPS has been trimmed in three ways, explains Carol Goodson, fine-arts specialist with the State Office of Education.
First, POPS takes a hit as the minimum school fund is decreased. Second, line-item funding to some of the major performing-arts groups has been trimmed. And third, in 2002, the Utah Legislature eliminated funding for in-school performances by smaller, regional art groups.
Also organizations that get POPS money have to come up with matching funds, notes Repertory Dance Theatre artistic director Linda C. Smith. And corporate and foundation money is increasingly hard to come by.