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Report of Regents Cultural Education Committee to The Board of Regents

Cultural Education Committee Members 
Regent Tilles, Co-Chair, Regent Ferrer, Co-Chair, Regent Cea, Regent Cottrell, Regent Collins, Regent Reyes, Regent Mittler, Regent Wills, Regent Tanikawa, Regent Catania, and Regent Hale

The Cultural Education Committee held its scheduled meeting on Monday, January 8, 2024. All members were present except Regent Aramina V. Ferrer, Regent Susan W. Mittler, and Regent Catherine Collins, who were excused.  Chancellor Lester W. Young and Regent Wade S. Norwood also attended the meeting. 


Deputy Commissioner Report – Department staff presented a report on the upcoming exhibition of the 1862 Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation and select pages from the speech Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered in New York City in September 1962 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the document. This new exhibition, The Moral Arc Toward Freedom, will be open to the public on Tuesday, February 13 through Sunday, March 3, 2024.  In support of the opening of this new exhibition, a public program featuring New York State Poet Patricia Spears Jones, historian Dr. Jennifer Burns, and New York State Museum curator Dr. Jennifer Lemak will be held on Thursday, February 15, 2024, at the Huxley Theater. This event is co-sponsored by the New York State Education Department’s Office of Cultural Education and the New York State Writers Institute.  

State Aid for Libraries – Department staff presented on the array of library aid programs administered by the New York State Library (NYSL) and the significant benefit of this aid to libraries of all types. Staff provided a brief overview of the New York State Library which is comprised of three divisions:  the Regent Joseph E. Bowman Jr. Research Library, the Talking Book and Braille Library (TBBL), and the Division of Library Development. 

The NYSL administers approximately $100 million in State aid to libraries and $34 million in aid for library construction.  To advance equity and improve services for lifelong learning, this aid supports public library systems, school library systems, tribal libraries and a variety of conservation/preservation and other statewide programs.

OCE/P-20 Collaborations – Department staff presented on the status of collaborative programs and resources from the Office of Cultural Education and P-20.  Topics covered during the presentation included: Solar Eclipse Resources for K-12 Classrooms; an overview of the Something Terrible Happened to Joey screening and panel event with families, educators, and mental health professionals from across New York State to discuss surviving and thriving after childhood trauma; P-3 Cultural Education Toolkit for younger students; Digital Resource Kit; updates regarding the Seal of Civic Readiness +1 Pathway; and expanded learning opportunities.  The presentation concluded with an overview of the value and necessity of continuing the collaborative efforts between the Office of Cultural Education and P-20 in the furtherance of building connections that will help students to engage in their local community, its resources, and cultural institutions. 

Consent Agenda - Finally, Department staff presented an overview of a Consent Agenda item related to the transfer of a National Science Foundation grant to the USNY Regents Research Fund.

Associated Agenda Item

Meeting Date: 
Monday, January 8, 2024 - 1:15pm