NAMM Urges California State Leaders to Update Visual and Performing Arts Standards

Mike Lawson • News • June 3, 2016

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The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) and representatives from its membership traveled to Sacramento to join arts leaders and music educators to ask members of the California Assembly for their support in updating the state’s Visual and Performing Arts standards (VAPA).

The state’s existing VAPA standards were last updated in 2001 and leave students without access to modern curriculum, instruction, and materials in the arts.

“With the passage of the ESSA, the NAMM Board and Executive Committee have recognized the imperative of communicating directly with government officials at the State level,” said Joe Lamond, NAMM president and CEO.  “This effort, driven by dedicated NAMM member volunteers, along with our education partners will result in increased access to music and arts education for all children and will have lasting impact in NAMM member communities long into the future.”

The delegation petitioned members of the Assembly to adopt AB 2862, which requires California to update and revise the Visual and Performing Arts standards for students in Grade Pre-K to 12, thereby providing students access to up-to-date curriculum, instruction and materials. A new law must be passed in order for the standards to meet both their district’s Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP) and the new federal guidelines found in The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). As proposed, AB 2862 will remedy the current VAPA standards by calling on the State Board of Education to adopt the new standards no later than January 1, 2019.

The advocacy trip was organized in part by NAMM, the California Music Education Association (CMEA), and Stand Up for Music (SU4M). The NAMM delegation was attended by representatives of Gordon’s Music and Sound, Inc., Nick Rail Music, Rockin’ Kidz LLC, Rock and Roll High, Skip’s Music, Taff Optical LLC, Taylor Guitars, Tim’s Music, and Yamaha Corporation of America.

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