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Meeting of the Board of Regents | April 2010

Thursday, April 1, 2010 - 9:05am

Cultural Education Committee Minutes

April 19, 2010

Time:  4:00 p.m. – 5:10 p.m.

Location:  Seminar Room, 5th Floor EB



Regent James C. Dawson, Chair of the Cultural Education Committee, submitted the following written report.

Your Committee on Cultural Education (CE) had its scheduled meeting on April 19, 2010.

In attendance were: Regents Dawson, Bowman and Brooks-Hopkins

Absent: Regents Phillips and Tilles

In addition to CE Committee Members in attendance were: Regent Bendit


Chair’s Remarks: Regent Dawson welcomed everyone and opened the meeting.  Regent Dawson reported on his recent participation in the Northern New York Library Network’s archival conference in Potsdam and in the Museum Association of New York’s (MANY) annual conference.

Deputy’s Report: Deputy Commissioner Jeffrey Cannell greeted everyone and briefly spoke about the Deputy’s OCE Monthly Report that was distributed prior to the meeting.  In addition, Mr. Cannell talked briefly about mandate relief for cultural institutions and existing requirements that ensure quality of service, stewardship of public records and protection of collections.  He also explained that in cases where a mandate may become financially burdensome for an institution, the institution may request relief via a variance or a waiver as stipulated in the Commissioner’s Regulations and Education Law providing the institution remains in compliance.  Mr. Cannell also reported briefly on his participation in the National Archives of the Netherlands Mutual Cultural Heritage meeting in Surniame, where he represented the United States.  Finally, Mr. Cannell provided an update regarding State Librarian, Bernard A. Margolis who is currently in the hospital.

CE (A) 1 - Regents Advisory Council on Libraries’ Annual Report

Deputy Commissioner Cannell introduced Regents Advisory Council on Libraries (RAC) Chair Bridget Quinn-Carey, Director of the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library.  Ms. Quinn-Carey explained that Libraries, which have an important role in our society and educational systems, provide a variety of services, programs and technology resources to millions of New Yorkers.  She pointed out that during difficult economic times, libraries receive greater use and become more essential to the public.  She distributed statistics on library use statewide, indicating a significant increase in use.   Included in the RAC report, were issues of funding, advocacy efforts, impact of libraries closing, and challenges libraries face in the current economic environment.  Ms. Quinn-Carey highlighted several key requests from the RAC, which included: (a) make library funding a priority; (b) recognize libraries as full partners in education; (c) re-evaluate the organization of libraries and library systems statewide; (d) require a certified library media specialist in elementary schools; and (e) establish a new commission on library services, to develop a statewide vision for libraries, museums and archives in the coming decade.  There was discussion following the presentation which focused on the changing role of libraries.  The RAC and staff were challenged to identify the legal and regulatory impediments to greater integration of libraries within the State Education Department and the education system across the state.  Copies of the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries Annual Report and the PowerPoint presentation were available.  Other RAC members were in attendance were Jill Hurst-Wahl, John Monahan, Mary Muller and Gerald Nichols.


CE (D) 1 Approval to Loan Items from the Collection of the New York State Library (NYSL) to the North Carolina Museum of History

Deputy Commissioner Cannell presented this request from the North Carolina Museum of History to borrow three items from the NYS Library’s George Washington Collection.  To ensure the borrowed artifacts would be well protected, staff from the NYSL have been in communication with North Carolina Museum of History staff regarding security, environmental controls and appropriate attribution of the source of the items.

Board of Regents’ approval is required by New York Code of Rules and Regulations (8 NYCRR §92.1f) to loan items from the NYS Library Collections, it is recommended that the Board of Regents approve this loan. Upon approval, NYSL staff will make necessary arrangements with staff at the North Carolina Museum of History.

Motion by: Regent Bowman

Seconded by: Regent Brooks-Hopkins

Action:  Motion carried unanimously

CE (D) 2 Presentation on the Museum's Cultural Resources Survey Program

Clifford Siegfried, Director and Assistant Commissioner for the Museum provided a brief background on their largest technical services program in the Museum – the Cultural Resources Survey Program (CRSP).  CRSP was established in 1959, in response to a federal mandate requiring states to preserve archaeological resources as part of the Federal Aid Highway Act of 1956.  CRSP is one of the largest continuously operated cultural resource management programs in the country and is established under Education Law, Section 233. 

Dr. Siegfried introduced Dr. Christina Rieth, State Archaeologist and Director of the Cultural Resource Survey Program.  Dr. Reith is the first female State Archaeologist in New York.  Her research has focused on the settlement diversity and socio-economic relationships between Early Late Prehistoric groups in the Northeast between A.D. 700 and 1300.  Dr. Rieth talked about how the CRSP successfully integrates service, research, collections stewardship, education, and public outreach and expanded on CRSP’s mission, partnerships, leadership role and program’s uniqueness.  CRSP is entirely self-funded, operating on a reimbursement basis.

As an applied research program, information is made available to the general public through publications, exhibits, site visits, and lectures.  Educational programs, designed to inform students and teachers about the state’s rich archaeological heritage, are important components of many projects.  Internships and volunteer opportunities also provide hands-on learning for undergraduate students interested in a career in archaeology.

An opportunity for questions and discussion was provided.

Meeting adjourned.