Report of Regents Cultural Education Committee to The Board of Regents
Your Committee on Cultural Education had its scheduled meeting on November 5, 2019. Regent Roger Tilles, Chair of the Cultural Education Committee, submitted the following written report. In attendance were committee members: Regent Tilles, Chair, Regent Cea, Regent Cottrell, Regent Ouderkirk and Regent Mead. Regents, in addition to Cultural Education Committee members, in attendance were: Chancellor Rosa, Regent Cashin, Regent Collins, Regent Hakanson, and Regent Mittler. Also, in attendance were Interim Commissioner Beth Berlin and Counsel Shannon Tahoe.
ITEMS FOR DISCUSSION
Chair Regent Tilles welcomed everyone. Deputy Commissioner Mark Schaming announced that 2.5 million students and children statewide participated in the State Library’s 2019 summer reading program. Deputy Commissioner Schaming also provided updates on the State Museum’s two recent teacher workshops (earth science and archaeology) as well as a presentation OCE staff led at a women’s suffrage conference in Syracuse in early November.
State Museum’s Anthropology Collections (Discussion) [CE (D) 2]
Dr. Jonathan Lothrop, Curator of Archaeology, provided a report on the Museum’s archaeology collections and how these collections support significant research and public education. The Museum’s archaeology curators and staff collect, interpret, and make available important specimens that reveal New York's human past, from the Ice Age to recent history. The Museum also supports students (undergraduate interns, graduate student fellows) and archaeologists who pursue research on the archaeology collections.
Update from New York State Historian (Discussion) [CE (D) 1]
Devin Lander, State Historian, provided an update on the Office of State History’s work to provide coordination and leadership of New York’s history field. The State Historian conducts research on New York history, provides statewide coordination and leadership of the history field, and promotes collaboration, education and scholarship to ensure a greater understanding of New York’s past.
Non-State Aid Budget and Legislative Initiatives (Discussion) [CE (D) 3]
Interim Commissioner Beth Berlin presented proposals for the Board’s 2020 Non-State Aid budget and legislative priorities that relate to the Office of Cultural Education. The proposals include: an increase of $11 million for State Aid for Library Construction (for a total of $45 million), $1.5 million for continuing access to the New York State Summer School of the Arts program, and $5 million to support the enactment of the Museum Education Act.