New campaign launched to help fund Roosevelt School of the Arts

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Staff at Roosevelt School of the Arts are hoping to hit a high note this year, but right now the school's budget just isn't big enough for the growing needs of students.

Roosevelt School of the Arts teaches beyond the textbook.

"They really teach you the ins and outs of what it's like in the industry and what it's like being part of the show," said Junior Nicholas Vawter.

The school instructs students on performing arts, music, vocal training and visual arts.

"We build 90% of the set, 90% of the costumes," explained Junior Chloe Cooper. "They're all done by students, so we all know how to do that and I know when I get to college I'll be able to show that."

Chloe is an aspiring Broadway performer who says Roosevelt has given her a place to call home in high school.

"I can go to any one of my art teachers and confide in them, and talk to them, and trust them and I'll feel better," adds Cooper.

RSA is part of the Fresno Unified School District and is free to its students. Most are from underserved areas of the Valley and the schools' programs are struggling to get by.

"It's not just now it's always," says Gina Jones with Friends of Roosevelt School of the Arts. "We want to step it up, to be able to offer more to the program here and be able to send the kids on trips."

Friends of the Roosevelt School of the Arts has launched a campaign to help fill the gaps and fund items like instruments, laptops, costumes and staging equipment.

"Kids can leave here with the skills they've learned and get real jobs in the industry," explained Jones. "Not just go out and try to figure things out. Our teachers treat this like the real thing."

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