Assemblymember O’Donnell Legislation Supporting Arts Education Sails Through Assembly

For immediate release:

(SACRAMENTO) – AB 2862, by Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell (D-Long Beach), promoting visual and performing arts education won Assembly approval today. The bill updates California’s academic standards to ensure students have access to modern curriculum and instructional materials in the arts.

“As a classroom teacher, I have seen firsthand how arts education can impact the lives of students,” said Assemblymember O’Donnell, Chair of the Assembly Education Committee. “Fostering creativity keeps kids engaged and has even been shown to raise tests scores, reduce absenteeism and lower dropout rates.”

California’s Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) standards have not been updated since 2001 and are in desperate need of revision so students can benefit from current curriculum, instruction, and instructional materials. AB 2862 authorizes education leaders, in conjunction with experts in arts instruction and the general public, to recommend updated VAPA standards to the State Board of Education.  New standards would be adopted no later than January 1, 2019.  The bill is co-sponsored by the California Art Education Association as well as the California Music Educators Association and is supported by a wide variety of statewide education advocacy groups.

The bill will now be heard in the Senate.

Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell represents the 70th Assembly District, which includes
Long Beach, Signal Hill, San Pedro and Catalina Island.