Students Take Center Stage Thanks to Community Partnerships

Filed Under: Expanded Learning - Posted @ 12:19pm

On May 25th, Tacoma students performed on the Main Stage at the Northwest Folklife Festival in Seattle. The Ballet Folklórico and World Drumming programs at Roosevelt Elementary School and First Creek Middle School presented traditional songs and dance. Tacoma is one of the few districts in the Northwest with a year-round Ballet Folklórico program.

“When I come to Ballet Folklórico I can be free, I can be Mexican, I can be who I am” – First Creek Middle School Student

The Ballet Folklórico and World Drumming programs are examples of how students benefit when community organizations work together on their behalf.  Both Ballet Folklórico and World Drumming are made possible thanks to partnerships between Broadway Center for the Performing Arts, YMCA of Pierce and Kitsap Counties, and Tacoma Public Schools.  The programs provide an opportunity for students to celebrate their heritage and invite others to learn and share in it as well.  They also help students build self-confidence, and develop supportive friendships with each other.

“First of all, this program allows students to learn something. It’s a great activity. Secondly, students of other cultures are invited to participate. This is something that I like a lot. It’s a unified community and that’s something that is very pleasing.” – Gonzalo Pérez, Tacoma parent

GTCF’s Expanded Learning Program Manager, Fahren Johnson followed along with the group and captured some live footage which you can view here.


GTCF supports high quality Expanded Learning Opportunities for young people throughout Pierce County through funding and the Youth Philanthropy Board. In addition, GTCF is also partnered with Tacoma Public Schools and other local organizations in an initiative funded by The Wallace Foundation to provide a system of coordination for Expanded Learning Opportunities at 12 Tacoma elementary schools sites beginning next Fall.

GTCF donors support youth and education through scholarships, individual giving, and planned giving. Reach out to GTCF’s donor services to find out how individual philanthropy can make a difference for the causes that matter to you.