Arts on Line Update March 2, 2009

128th General Assembly: The Ohio House and Senate will hold sessions and committee meetings this week.

The 3109 page budget bill, Sub. HB 1 (Sykes), was available last week, along with more information about the impact of the final version of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) on Ohio’s proposed budget.

J. Pari Sabety, director of the Office of Budget and Management, explained on February 25, 2009 to the members of the House Finance and Appropriations Committee, chaired by Representative Sykes, how federal dollars from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 would be allocated in the proposed FY10-FY11 state budget.  Ohio is expected to receive $8.2 billion from the $787 billion federal recovery package.

The Executive Budget that was introduced on February 2, 2009 by Governor Strickland included federal stimulus funds based on the U.S. House’s version of the ARRA as it was making its way through Congress. According to Director Sabety, the ARRA as signed by the President on February 17, 2009 provides approximately $5.8 billion in federal funds to support the proposed $54.37 billion state budget, Sub. HB 1 (Sykes). Overall, Ohio is expected to receive approximately $135.7 million more in federal support than was included in the proposed state budget introduced on February 2, 2009.  All programs are funded at the Executive Budget levels, with the exception of Mental Health, Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services, and Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, which will receive increases. The federal package also includes approximately $102 million more over the biennium than expected for the education programs Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Title 1.

During questioning Director Sabety said that the administration is reviewing certain education provisions as a result of conversations with education organizations, including those related to accountability, state aid for low-wealth districts, gifted education and enrichment funding, and teacher salary levels.

In response to a question from Representative Yates regarding the reductions to the budgets of the Ohio Arts Council and Historical Society, Director Sabety replied that the reductions for these agencies were difficult, and were examples of “tough choices” that had to be made.

To read more about the federal investment through the ARRA, please visit the Office of Budget and Management’s website at http://obm.ohio.gov/ Special Analysis of the Federal Stimulus Fund Use.

2) More on Sub. HB 1 – Biennial Budget: The language of the biennial budget bill, Sub. HB 1 (Sykes), was introduced on February 24, 2009, providing lawmakers and the public more details of the funding and policy changes proposed by Governor Strickland.

The Legislative Service Commission has available on its website several documents that provide an analysis of Sub. HB 1’s components and funding levels.  They can be found at http://www.lsc.state.oh.us/.

Overall Sub. HB 1 makes significant policy and funding changes for Ohio in addition to revamping Ohio’s education and school funding systems.  The following are some education related and/or interesting provisions proposed in Sub. HB 1 (Sykes).

*Evidence Based Model ORC Section 3306: This new section of the Ohio Revised Code (ORC) includes the provisions outlining the Evidence Based Model for funding education.  Currently the school funding formula is primarily included in ORC Section 3317.

*Partnership for Continued Learning Section 265.10.10: Supports the Partnership for Continued Learning with up to $150,000 in each fiscal year at the direction of the Governor.  The Partnership shall advise and make recommendations to promote collaboration among relevant state entities in an effort to help local communities develop coherent and successful “P-16” learning systems. The Governor, or the Governor’s designee, shall serve as the chairperson.

*Section 265.10.10. Supports the Governor’s Closing the Achievement Gap Initiative with up to $500,000 in each fiscal year for administration and activities, including contract services, travel, and other expenses.

*Performance Audits Schools. JVS, ESCs Section 265.10.50: Provides up to $16,394,000 in fiscal year 2010 and up to $17,980,000 in fiscal year 2011 to be used by the Department of Education (ODE) to contract with the Auditor of State or another identified vendor as determined by the ODE and approved by the Controlling Board to conduct performance audits of school districts and community schools on a five year cycle.

The Office of School Resource Management in the ODE shall determine the scope of audits, not limited to operations, in consultation with the Auditor of State and the Office of Budget and Management. Priority may be given to districts in fiscal distress.

A portion of this amount in each fiscal year shall be used by the ODE to contract with the Auditor of State or another identified vendor as determined by the ODE and approved by the Controlling Board to conduct performance audits of educational service centers and joint vocational school districts (JVSDs). The purpose of such audits shall be to assist educational service centers and JVSDs in identifying and implementing operational efficiencies, setting statewide benchmarks in certain operations, evaluating quality of services provided to school districts, and using findings to inform and develop recommendations for a new educational service center and JVSD funding model to be implemented in the fiscal year 2012-2013 biennium.

*College Readiness Exam Section 265.20.10: Provides up to $212,486 in each fiscal year to support the assessments required under Section 3301.0715 of the Revised Code.

The Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Chancellor of the Ohio Board of Regents shall determine a percentage of the foregoing appropriation item 200437, Student Assessment, that shall be used in each fiscal year to pay for all or a portion of the following: (1) a college readiness exam for high school juniors enrolled in Ohio secondary schools and (2) preparation, practice examinations, and diagnostics related to a college readiness exam, including, but not limited to, the PSAT, PLAN, and EXPLORE.

Of the foregoing appropriation item 200437, Student Assessments, a portion may be used by the Superintendent of Public Instruction to reimburse public school districts for (1) a portion of costs associated with Advanced Placement testing and Advanced Placement programming, including teacher training, teaching materials, and student supplies and equipment and (2) a portion of costs associated with taking the International Baccalaureate Examination.

*Auxiliary Services Section 265.20.90: Supports up to $2,121,800 in each fiscal year for payment of the Post-Secondary Enrollment Options Program for nonpublic students.

*Foundation Funding Section 265.30.40:
-School Choice:  Provides up to $8,686,000 in fiscal year 2010 and up to $8,722,860 in fiscal year 2011 shall be used to operate the school choice program.

-Cleveland Scholarship:  Distributes to the Cleveland Municipal School District under this section, up to $11,901,887 in each fiscal year to operate the school choice program and up to $1 million in each fiscal year to provide tutorial assistance.

-ESC Reimbursement:  Provides up to $42.3 million in each fiscal year to fund the state reimbursement of educational service centers.

-State Aid Offset Public Utility:  Provides $75 million in each fiscal year for the state education aid offset due to the change in public utility valuation as a result of Am. Sub. S.B. 3 and Am. Sub. S.B. 287, both of the 123rd General Assembly.

-State Aid Offset Tangible Personal Property:  Provides $106,768,866 in fiscal year 2010 and $238,511,467 in fiscal year 2011 for the state education aid offset because of the changes in tangible personal property valuation as a result of Am. Sub. H.B. 66 of the 126th General Assembly.

*Joint Vocational School Districts Section 265.30.50: Distributes to each such district joint vocational funding in an amount equal to the district’s joint vocational funding from the previous fiscal year inflated by 1.9 per cent.

*Teach Ohio Section 265.30.60:  Provides $1 million in each fiscal year to support the Teach Ohio program established under division (A) of section 3333.39 of the Revised Code to encourage high school students interested in entering the teaching profession.

-Alternative Teacher Licensure Section 265.30.60:  Distributes funds to support alternative teacher licensure programs under section 3319.26 and division (C) of section 3333.39 of the Revised Code. Programs shall support teacher licensure in laboratory-based science, advanced mathematics, or foreign language at the secondary education level and employment with an Ohio school district designated by the Department as a hard-to-staff school. The programs shall be consistent with the State Board of Education’s alternative licensure requirements.

*Lottery Profits Education Reserve Fund Section 265.40.60:  Creates the Lottery Profits Education Reserve Fund (Fund 7018) in the State Treasury. Investment earnings of the Lottery Profits Education Reserve Fund shall be credited to the fund.

*Cleveland Municipal School District Early Adopter Section 265.40.90: Establishes the Cleveland Municipal School District Early Adopter Project.

*Educational Service Center Funding Section 265.50.10: Provides in FY10-11 up to 90 percent of the funding level provided to Educational Service Centers for fiscal year 2009.

*Early College Start-Up Community Schools Section 265.50.90: Supports the Early College high school program.  This program will provide high school students with a personalized learning plan based on an accelerated curriculum combining high school and college-level coursework. Any early college high school that is operated by a big eight school district in partnership with a private university may operate as a new start-up community school under Chapter 3314 of the Revised Code beginning in the 2007-2008 school year, if they meet certain criteria.

*Task Force on Teacher Compensation Section 265.60.20:  Establishes the Task Force on Teacher Compensation and Performance.

*Volunteers at the ODE Section 265.60.30:  Allows the ODE to use volunteers to accomplish any of the purposes of the ODE. The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall approve for what purposes volunteers may be used and for these purposes may recruit, train, and oversee the services of volunteers.

*School for the Blind and School For the Deaf Section 260.60.40: Moves oversight of the State School for the Blind and the State School for the Deaf to the ODE. On and after that date, the schools shall be part of the Department and shall operate in accordance with Chapter 3325. of the Revised Code, as amended by this act.

*Educator Standards Board Section 265.60.60: Directs the State Board of Education to appoint a school district treasurer or business manager and a parent to the Educator Standards Board, and the Chancellor to appoint a representative of higher education.

*Committee to Update Standards and Curricula Section 265.60.80: Directs the State Board of Education to convene a committee of national experts, state experts, and local practitioners to provide advice and guidance in the design of the updated standards and curricula required by section 3301.079 of the Revised Code, as amended by this act.

*School Employees Health Care Board Section 265.60.90:  Transfers all duties, powers, obligations, and functions performed by the School Employees Health Care Board from the Department of Administrative Services to the Department of Education by July 1, 2009.

*Center for Early Childhood Development Section 265.70.10: Directs the Superintendent of Public Instruction, in consultation with the Governor, to create the Center for Early Childhood Development in the ODE comprised of staff from the Department of Education, the Department of Job and Family Services, the Department of Health, and any other state agency as determined necessary by the Superintendent.

*Early Childhood Financing Workgroup Section 265.70.20: Directs the Early Childhood Advisory Council to establish an Early Childhood Financing Workgroup. The chairperson of the Early Childhood Advisory Council shall serve as chairperson of the Early Childhood Financing Workgroup. The Early Childhood Financing Workgroup shall develop recommendations that explore the implementation of a single financing system for early care and education programs, and submit to the Governor its recommendations no later than December 31, 2009.

*Interactive Instruction Program Section 281.20. Distributes up to $1,104,605 in fiscal year 2010 and up to $1,104,905 in fiscal year 2011 among the 12 Ohio educational television stations with the advice and approval of eTech Ohio. These funds shall be used for the production of interactive instructional programming series with priority given to resources aligned with state academic content standards in consultation with the ODE, and for teleconferences. The programming shall be targeted to the needs of the poorest two hundred school districts as determined by the district’s adjusted valuation per pupil as defined in former section 3317.0213 of the Revised Code as that section existed prior to June 30, 2005.

*Early Learning Initiative Section 309.40.60:  Establishes the Early Learning Initiative administered by the ODE and the Department of Job and Family Services.  The Initiative shall provide early learning services to eligible children. Early learning services may be provided on a full-day basis, a part-day basis, or both a full-day and part-day basis.

*Tuition Trust Authority 371.70.20:  Changes the Ohio Tuition Trust Authority to the Ohio Tuition Trust Advisory Board charged with the duty to advise the Chancellor of the Board of Regents.

*Transfer of Funds Section 512.50:  Directs the Director of Budget and Management to transfer $200 million cash in either fiscal year 2010 or fiscal year 2011 from the Education Facilities Trust Fund (Fund N087), which is used by the School Facilities Commission, to the General Revenue Fund. Not later than June 30, 2013, $200 million cash shall be deposited into Fund N087, or another fund of the Commission, for the purpose of constructing or renovating school facilities pursuant to Chapter 3318 of the Revised Code.

*Federal Stimulus Guidelines Section 521.70:  Provides that the Director of Budget and Management may issue guidelines to any agency applying for federal money made available to this state for fiscal stabilization and recovery purposes, and may prescribe the process by which agencies are to comply with any reporting requirements established by the federal government. Federal stabilization funds received for elementary, secondary, and higher education, public safety, and any other government service shall be deposited into the state treasury to the credit of the General Revenue Fund. If additional federal fiscal stabilization funds are available, the Director of Budget and Management may authorize expenditures from the General Revenue Fund in excess of the amounts appropriated to provide additional government services.

*Agencies and Councils Repealed Section 630.10: -Ohio Teacher Education and Licensure Advisory Council 3319.28(D) -Governor’s Advisory Council on Physical Fitness, Wellness, & Sports 3701.77 -Council to Advise on the Establishment and Implementation of the Birth Defects Information System -Community Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities Trust Fund Advisory Council 5123.353

*Collective Bargaining Section 741.10:  Authorizes the Office of Collective Bargaining of the Department of Administrative Services to negotiate with the respective state collective bargaining units various payroll reduction strategies through the collective bargaining process prior to July 1, 2009, including, but not limited to, reductions in pay for fiscal years 2010 and 2011 and an increase in each state employee’s share of dental, vision, and life insurance benefits for those fiscal years. If the Office successfully negotiates or reaches alternative payroll reduction strategies through the collective bargaining process, those payroll reduction strategies shall be implemented. The total amount of state employee payroll reduction strategy savings to be negotiated or implemented for each of those fiscal years shall be between $170 million and $200 million unless otherwise agreed to by the Office of Collective Bargaining and the Director of Budget and Management. The Director of Budget and Management is authorized to transfer cash from non-General Revenue Fund funds to the General Revenue Fund to carry out this section.

More next week on some of the new proposals included in Sub. HB 1 (Sykes).

The budget is available online at http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/BillText128/128_HB_1_PHC_Y.pdf

3)  This Week at the Statehouse
*Off Site Hearings:  The House Primary and Secondary Subcommittee, chaired by Representative Dyer, has scheduled three “off site” hearings on the proposed state budget, Sub. HB 1 (Sykes).  These hearings are open to the public and will be in addition to those held in Columbus at the Statehouse. Anyone interested in testifying at these off site hearings should call Lauren McMillin in Representative Dyer’s office at 614-466-1790 or email her at lauren.mcmillin@ohr.state.oh.us.  Testimony will be limited to ensure that as many individuals as possible can participate.

Monday, March 2, 2009 at 4:00 PM
Springfield High School
2966 Sanitarium Rd.
Akron, OH

Monday, March 9, 2009 at 4:00 PM
Washington State Com. College
Graham Auditorium
710 Colegate Dr.
Marietta, OH

Monday, March 16, 2009
Southwest TBD

TUESDAY, MARCH 3, 2009
*The House Finance & Appropriations, chaired by Representative Sykes (466-3100), will meet at 9:00 AM in room 313, and will reconvene at 4:00 PM to consider the Transportation Budget, HB 2 (Ujvagi).

*The House Primary and Secondary Education Subcommittee, chaired by Representative Dyer (466-1790), will meet at 1:00 PM in room 313 to hear testimony on Sub. HB 1 (Sykes) from Ohio School for the Deaf, Ohio School for the Blind, Lottery Commission, School Facilities Commission, and eTech Ohio.

*The Senate Finance and Financial Institutions Committee, chaired by Senator Carey (614-466-8156) will meet at 10:00 AM in the Senate Finance Hearing Room and reconvene at 2:30 PM or after session. In the morning the committee will hear testimony on SB1 (Hughes) Building Ohio Jobs.  In the afternoon the committee will hear testimony on SB5 (Buehrer), which creates the Grants for Grads Program.

*The Senate Education Committee, chaired by Representative Cates (614-466-8072), will meet in the North Hearing room at 4:00 PM to hear testimony on SB 6 (Coughlin), which creates the Special Education Scholarship Pilot Program.

WEDNESDAY MARCH 4, 2009
*The House Finance & Appropriations Committee, chaired by Representative Sykes (466-3100), will meet at 9:30 AM in room 313 to consider the Transportation Budget, HB 2 (Ujvagi).

*The House Primary and Secondary Education Subcommittee, chaired by Representative Dyer (466-1790), will meet at 2:30 PM in room 313 to hear testimony on Sub. HB 1 (Sykes) from the Ohio Department of Education.

THURSDAY, MARCH 5, 2009
*The House Higher Education Subcommittee, chaired by Representative Celeste, will meet at 9:30 AM in hearing room 122 to hear testimony from several agencies on the biennial budget, Sub. HB 1 (Sykes).  The following agencies will be testifying:  Secretary of State, Arts Council, Historical Society, Cultural Facilities Commission, Tuition Trust Authority, and Auditor of State.

*The House Primary and Secondary Education Subcommittee, chaired by Representative Dyer (466-1790), will meet at 9:30 PM in room 313 to accept invited testimony on the biennial budget, Sub. HB 1 (Sykes).

4) President Obama Proposes 2010 Budget:  President Obama addressed a joint session of Congress on February 23, 2009 and outlined the challenges and opportunities that our nation faces. In this address the President also emphasized the important role of education to keep our nation competitive, creative, and innovative. The President pledged to address the high rate of dropouts and increase the number of college graduates, and ensure that all children have access to a complete and comprehensive curriculum.

President Obama released on February 26, 2009 an overview of his proposed 2010 Federal Budget, which starts on October 1, 2009 and projects funding levels through 2019.  The budget is entitled, “Fiscal Year 2010 Budget — A New Era of Responsibility:  Renewing America’s Promise.” The actual budget will be introduced in April 2009.

According to this overview, the $3.55 trillion proposed federal budget includes major policy changes for health care, energy, higher education, increased regulation of businesses, stronger environmental policies, investments in housing and neighborhoods, and tax cuts for the middle and working classes.

It is still not clear how the recently approved American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 will impact future funding levels for programs such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Title 1, which received large one-time increases through the ARRA.
The 2010 budget for the U.S. Department of Education is listed as $46.7 billion, and focuses on the following:

*Creates incentives and supports for States to build comprehensive, coordinated, and  high quality early childhood “Zero to Five” systems, building on the ARRA of 2009.
*Strengthens and reforms public schools to meet the needs of all students by helping States to develop high quality, rigorous standards and assessments.
*Prepares and rewards effective teachers and principals.
*Supports innovative and effective approaches to improving student achievement to help all students.
*Funds education research.
*Expands opportunities for students to go to college and graduate by expanding student aid, shifting resources from banks and middlemen toward students, creating new incentives for colleges to focus on student completion, and expanding access to low-cost Federal student loans, and provide an inflationary increase in Pell Grants.

For more information about the proposed federal budget, please visit the Office of Management and Budget at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/ or the U.S. Department of Education at http://www.ed.gov/news/pressreleases/2009/02/02262009.html

5)  Hearings on Education Bills: The House Education Committee, chaired by Representative Brian Williams, and the Senate Education Committee, chaired by Senator Gary Cates, met on February 24, 2009 and heard testimony on several education bills.

In the House Education Committee Representatives Debbie Phillips and Jennifer Garrison presented sponsor testimony on HB 4, which proposes to establish an interactive distance learning pilot project in 2009-2010.  This project will expand the use of technology in schools to provide more curricular opportunities to students, and addresses the disparities in the current system regarding access to rigorous curriculum.  The eTech Commission would be responsible for the project, which would include statewide teleconferencing of three courses, two advanced placement courses and one foreign language course to high schools.

Superintendent of Public Instruction, Deborah Delisle, also addressed the House Education Committee.  She provided some background information about her experiences as an educator, and what she sees as the role of the State Board of Education and the Ohio Department of Education in preparing students for the 21st Century and strengthening Ohio’s economy and future.

Representative Luckie presented testimony on HB 21, which permits a school district to surrender the transportation of its resident high school students attending community schools to those community schools. According to Representative Luckie, boards of education need the authority to make decisions regarding the transportation of their students and also community school students, and this bill allows that to happen. Currently, school districts are required to transport community school students, within certain parameters, even if the community schools operate on different time schedules.  Community schools already have the option to transport their own students through means other than school district buses.

Chairman Williams presented sponsor testimony on HB 26, which prohibits corporal punishment in all public and chartered non public schools. A similar bill was approved by the House Education Committee last session, but was not considered by the full House. According to the testimony, there are no reports that support corporal punishment as a way to improve student behavior.  In Ohio there are only a few districts that still use corporal punishment, and in some cases it is being applied disproportionately to poor, minority, and disabled students.  The believe that this bill takes away local control is countered by the state’s interest to protect children and provide safe learning environments.

The Senate Education Committee heard testimony from individuals supporting SB 6 (Coughlin), which creates the Special Education Scholarship Pilot Program.   Speaking as proponents of the bill were Doug Krinsky of Westerville, the father of an child with autism who participates in the Autism Scholarship Program; Ina Warrick of West Mansfield, who has a son with multiple disabilities; and Kathy Harter of Dublin, whose children attend the Marburn Academy, a private school.

6)  State Budgeting Matters:  The March 1, 2009 edition of State Budgeting Matters by Dick Sheridan, Center for Community Solutions, provides a comprehensive analysis of sixteen major policy changes that are included in Sub. HB 1 (Sykes), the proposed FY10-11 budget. The article is entitled “FY2010 – FY2011 State Budget:  A Plethora of Sticky Wickets”.

According to the author, every state budget includes policy changes, but, “What is different about this budget is the extent of such changes and the magnitude of the fiscal implications from failing to make them.”

For example, the article describes the significance of proposed policy changes such increases in fees; use of one-time funds to balance the budget; changes in the school funding program; expanded health care coverage; government reorganization; continued tax cuts; etc.  The author concludes:

“The number and extent of difficult policy choices contained in this budget is staggering and will consume endless hours of legislative debate that may well extend beyond June 30, the end of the current fiscal biennium, especially with regard to education reform. Complicating matters will be the fact that even before tackling these difficult issues the legislature will have to find ways to bring the governor’s already out-of-balance budget request back into balance.”

State Budgeting Matters is available at http://www.communitysolutions.com/.

7)  DISCOVER PARENTING – 2009:  United Services for Effective Parenting – Ohio, Cindy McKay Executive Director, will be celebrating its twentieth year of Discover Parenting, a statewide educational program that features classroom study and culminates with a photo project and statewide contest.

The Discover Parenting program includes lessons, written by teachers, that allow high school and middle school students to explore critical thinking and feeling about the issues of safe and responsible parenting.

Students conclude the project by submitting a photo with a caption related to this year’s contest theme, “How Does It Feel to be a Safe & Responsible Parent?” In May, Ohio advocate/leaders will assist with judging entries displayed at the Riffe Center for Government and the Arts in Columbus. The goal of the display is to bring Middle and High School students’ work to the Ohio legislators, whose decisions impact their lives on a daily basis, in a place where all Ohioans can view it.

This year all Discover Parenting Photo Display entries must be received by April 17, 2008. The display will be open May 4 through June 5, 2009 at the Riffe Center.

This year teachers can also participate in an action project through the support of the Agnes Beaton Memorial Fund for safety education from the NAWHSL (National Association of Women Highway Safety Leaders).

Using a “students as teachers” model, the action project requires student-led presentations to young children (i.e. preschool, kindergarten, etc.), their teachers, and parents that *teach safe seating in vehicles *enhance school curricula, FCCLA, or other projects on safety, leadership, parenting, and early childhood *produce a report portfolio, with photos and tools (documents/videotapes, etc.) to be shared and displayed locally in Ohio and at the national conference *develop safety advocates among youngsters, parents and teachers *develop local support for student school programs

Action Projects may include the Financial Responsibility Project, traditional family safety issues, or include both areas.

This project can be done by a class or a small group of students in conjunction with the Discover Parenting photo project.  A group photo and brief summary of the project must be submitted by April 17, so participation in the action project will be recognized as part of the Discover Parenting Display.  Final materials and a notebook or portfolio need to be submitted by May 15, 2008.

$25.00 is available for all teachers whose students enter the final competitions (Action project or Discover Parenting photo exhibit).

Discover Parenting and Action Project winners and their schools will receive cash awards.

For more information about Discover Parenting and the Action Project, please call 1-800-262-4KIDs, 614-571-8313, fax 614-868-9755, or email at usepohio@usepohio.com.

8)  Bills Introduced:

HB41 Lottery Profits (Gerberry): Requires that a portion of lottery profits be distributed annually on a per pupil basis to public and chartered nonpublic schools. Introduced 02/24/2009.

FYI ARTS:
*House Approves FY2009 Omnibus Appropriations: The U.S. House approved on February 25, 2009 the FY2009 Omnibus Appropriations bill H. 1105, a continuing resolution to fund government agencies and departments beyond March 6, 2009.  The bill includes a $10 million increase for the NEA’s budget, which will total $155 million. Increases are also included for the Arts in Education program from $37.5 million to $38.1 million. H. 1105 is expected to be considered by the Senate this week.

*Ohio Provides Leadership in the Arts at the National Level: Congratulations to Ohio Citizens for the Arts Executive Director Donna Collins who was elected Vice Chair of the State Arts Action Network (SAAN) Council.  The SAAN is comprised of the nation’s Citizens Advocacy organizations and is a network that operates under the Americans for the Arts umbrella of service organizations. Anne Katz from Arts Wisconsin serves as the SAAN Council Chair.

Congratulations are also in order to Ohio Citizens for the Arts Board member and Greater Columbus Arts Council President Bryan W. Knicely. Mr. Knicely has been appointed to the Americans for the Arts United States Urban Arts Federation as vice president. The United States Urban Arts Federation (USUAF) is an alliance of the directors of arts agencies in the nation’s 60 largest cities. USUAF members meet twice a year in conjunction with Americans for the Arts events to discuss urban arts policy and funding.

*Hope for An Arts Infusion:  An article in the Chicago Tribune by Mike Boehm published on March 1, 2009 asks, “Will the Obamas’ interest in the arts create an inflation of appreciation?”. According to the article, many see the First Family’s interest in the arts as a “boon” to the arts community in Washington and the nation. The article is available at http://www.chicagotribune.com/features/arts/chi-0301-obama-artsmar01,0,4919968.story.

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This update is made possible through the generous support of the Ohio Music Education Association (www.omea-ohio.org), Ohio Art Education Association (www.oaea.org), Ohio Educational Theatre Association (www.Ohioedta.org); OhioDance (www.ohiodance.org), and the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education (www.OAAE.net).

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About OAAE

Since our founding in 1974, by Dr. Dick Shoup and Jerry Tollifson, our mission has always been to ensure the arts are an integral part of the education of every Ohioan. Working at the local, state, and federal levels through the efforts of a highly qualified and elected Board of Directors, our members, and a professional staff we have four primary areas of focus: building collaborations, professional development, advocacy, and capacity building. The OAAE is funded in part for its day-to-day operation by the Ohio Arts Council. This support makes it possible for the OAAE to operate its office in Columbus and to work statewide to ensure the arts are an integral part of the education of every Ohioan. Support for arts education projects comes from the Ohio Arts Council, The John F. Kennedy Center, Ohio Music Education Association, Ohio Art Education Association, Ohio Educational Theatre Association, VSA Ohio, and OhioDance. The Community Arts Education programs of Central Ohio are financially assisted by the Franklin County Board of Commissioners and the Greater Columbus Arts Council. We gratefully acknowledge and appreciate the financial support received from each of these outstanding agencies and organizations.
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