Music Education Policy Roundup – January 29, 2021

NAfME News

NAfME Blog- Governors’ Budget Proposals

In our first analysis of the legislative session, NAfME Policy staff identifies a positive trend in governors’ budget proposals for the coming fiscal year. These proposals are meant to outline an administration’s priorities for the year’s legislative session and usually function as a starting point for the legislature’s budget work.

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State and Federal News

MN- Walz announces sweeping education plan amid ongoing pandemic

1/25/2021- ‘Monday, Gov. Tim Walz and Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan unveiled a new education plan for Minnesota.’

Biden’s gambit: Will schools be ready to reopen in 100 days?

1/19/2021- ‘President-elect Joe Biden is expected to bring significant changes for K-12 schools, but perhaps none is more awaited by school leaders than a coronavirus mitigation and school reopening strategy.’

MS- State education department announces exam requirement changes

1/21/2021- ‘The Mississippi Department of Education announced changes to exam requirements for students due to the coronavirus.’

Chicago Teachers Union members vote to continue teaching remotely Monday

1/24/2021- ‘Members of the Chicago Teachers Union voted this weekend to continue teaching remotely Monday in a move that disrupts Chicago Public Schools’ reopening plan, the Chicago Sun-Times reports.’

Idaho House OKs plan to let lawmakers call special sessions

1/21/2021- ‘A constitutional amendment allowing the part-time Idaho Legislature to call itself into a special session passed the House on Thursday and is headed to the Senate.’

New Mexico governor signs bill to fund legislature, security

1/21/2021- ‘New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has signed the first bill of the 2021 legislative session, which funds legislative operations in the state capitol, including an unprecedented amount of security spending in the wake of the Jan. 6 insurrection in Washington D.C.’

Colorado legislation looks to make standardized tests optional for college admissions

1/21/2021- ‘Students would no longer be required to take the SAT or ACT when applying to Colorado’s public colleges under proposed legislation that aims to make higher education more accessible to low-income and first-generation college applicants who often don’t do as well on standardized tests.’

Biden Orders Up More COVID Guidance for Colleges

1/22/2021- ‘President orders creation of more detailed guidance for colleges, with evidence-based recommendations “on how and when to open.”’

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announces reversal of some state education cuts

1/22/2021- ‘Gov. Mike DeWine is restoring some of the state education money that he said last year would be cut, he announced via an executive order on Friday.’

Legislators in Washington state sink their teeth into pandemic-era issues for schools

1/25/2021- ‘As they launched into their full-fledged pandemic legislative session earlier this month, lawmakers in Washington state had no shortage of education issues to sort through.’

Research and Analysis

5 ways schools are addressing pandemic-induced mental health issues

Schools are strengthening student-parent-school relationships and improving mental health response coordination in reaction to COVID-19’s toll on students and staff.

A Look at How Arts Teachers Can Promote a Sense of Community

Arts teachers can help all students in a school feel that they’re part of a collaborative learning community, even when they’re not together.

Policy Roundup compiled by NAfME’s Matt Barusch.