April 26, 2004
For Immediate Release
For Information and Visuals Contact:
Tel (713) 223-5522 ext.26
Fax (713) 223-4411
Mary Doyle Glover
Tel (713) 223-5522 ext. 11
Student Artwork at Minute Maid Park
FotoFest’s Award-Winning Education Program
May 11, 2004 – May 16, 2004
Minute Maid Park
HOUSTON, TEXAS (April 26, 2004) – FotoFest’s Literacy Through Photography®, a pre-collegiate Writing and Photography Program aimed at improving literacy and writing skills through the use of visual art, will mount its Fourteenth annual exhibit of student art and writing projects this spring, May 11 – May 16, 2004, at Minute Maid Park, home field for the Houston Astros baseball team.
FotoFest Founder and Chairman Fred Baldwin says, “It is important that Minute Maid Park and the Astros are hosting FotoFence again this year because it is a great opportunity for Houston area students to show their work to the public.” “The work of these students, many of them from underprivileged schools, will be seen by as many as 150,000 visitors at the ballpark that week.”
Saturday, May 15, 2004, 11am – 12pm, FotoFest and the Astros are hosting a reception for students exhibiting at the FotoFence, their families and the public. The following day, Sunday, May 16, LTP students will attend that afternoon’s baseball game courtesy of the Houston Astros.
Since 1990, the Literacy Through Photography (LTP) program has been used by over 15,000 students in the Houston area, other Texas cities and across the Southwest. During the 2003 – 2004 School Year, the LTP program has been taught in 44 schools, by 81 teachers, serving approximately 2,000 students in the 3rd to 12th grades.
28 schools throughout the region, from eight districts in Harris, Ft. Bend and Galveston counties will present over 200 posters this year in the lobby of the historic Union Station at Minute Maid Park.
The students’ work, collaged posters that include original writing and photographs, explores themes such as Family, Community, and Dreams. The curriculum developed by FotoFest is flexible and expandable and has been modified into both advanced and English as a second language versions.
JUST A DROP – Water Curriculum
FotoFest developed a new Water-related curriculum to engage students in increasingly important water issues. The Just A Drop Water curriculum was commissioned by FotoFest and designed by marine biologist and artist Karla Klay and environmental scientist Tina Proctor, co-directors of The Artist Boat, Galveston, TX. For students in the 5th – 8th grades, the curriculum contains lessons and activities that invite students to explore the magic of water and how it affects their lives and community. Activities include creative writing assignments and photography inspired by their investigations, experiences, and knowledge of the value of water. Like the standard LTP curriculum, these will be assembled into personal photo displays with pictures and writing. Just A Drop Water projects were exhibited at the Harris County Department of Education building in March and April during the FotoFest 2004 Biennial.
Although commissioned this year to coincide with FotoFest 2004 - Water, FotoFest will continue to use the Just A Drop curriculum in the future to supplement its standard LTP curriculum. Karla Kay, one of the curriculum’s developers says, "We are excited that water issues will continue to be brought into classrooms with the multi-disciplinary approach that the Just a Drop program provides."
Started as a workshop in 1987 and expanded in 1990 to include 1,000 HISD children, LTP has grown from a pilot project to a rapidly expanding part of the Houston Independent School District (HISD) system. Today, FotoFest trains HISD teachers in LTP methods in coordination with an expansion strategy laid out by senior HISD staff.
FotoFest has expanded LTP to other Houston area school districts and is collaborating with Project GRAD (Graduation Really Achieves Dreams), a nation-wide non-profit organization founded in Houston and dedicated to ensuring quality public education for children in economically disadvantaged communities, increasing high school graduation rates and providing college preparedness. Since the fall of 2001, FotoFest has trained 27 teachers in ten Project GRAD participating schools. By Spring 2003, over 400 Project GRAD elementary, middle, and high school students were utilizing the Literacy Through Photography program.
Copies of both the regular LTP curriculum and the Just A Drop curriculum are available. Please contact Mary Doyle Glover, LTP Coordinator at 713/ 223-5522 ext 11 or LTP@fotofest.org.
For more information on FotoFence and other FotoFest programming, please contact Mr. Vinod Hopson, Press Coordinator at 713/ 223-5522 ext 26 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
FotoFest, 1113 Vine Street, Houston, Texas 77002
LTP SPONSORS - 2004 (as of April 26, 2004)
FotoFence 2004, Literacy Through Photography 2003 - 2004 and the Just a Drop Water curriculum have received special funding from Vale-Asche Foundation; The J. P. Morgan Chase Foundation; The Simmons Foundation; The City of Houston through the Cultural Arts Council of Houston/Harris County; H-E-B Pantry Foods; Fuji Photo Film USA, Inc; The Houston Astros
The Literacy Through Photography program has received support from The Bernard and Audre Rapoport Foundation; The William Stamps Farish Fund; Houston Endowment, Inc.; The Powell Foundation; The Clayton Fund; Susan Vaughan Foundation; The George and Mary Josephine Hamman Foundation; Marion and Speros Martel Foundation; The Jack H. and William M. Light Charitable Trust; The Felvis Fund; Harris and Eliza Kempner Fund; Education Foundation of America; The Favrot Fund; The Charles Englehard Foundation; The Kettering Family Foundation; Ettinger Foundation; Scurlock Foundation; Margaret Cullinan Wray Charitable Lead Annuity Trust; The Samuels Foundation of the Jewish Community of Houston; The Gordon and Mary Cain Foundation; Hexagroup; CANON USA; Olympus Corporation; American General Corporation; Southwestern Bell; Charter Bank