July 18, 2016, Florida Cultural Alliance Agenda and Materials
for Advocacy and Information-to-Use Statewide Conference Call

July 18, 2016, Advocacy & Information-to-Use Statewide Conference Call Agenda and Details
     Thank you for registering to participate on this month's statewide call organized by the Florida Cultural Alliance (FCA).  Each month, FCA organizes these calls to keep you informed and engaged in state and federal issues and other information that matter to you and Florida's arts, arts education, and culture industry.

Here is a list of today's registered participants on this call.

Number 1

Many thanks to our guest speakers:

Jeff Poulin
Narric Rome
  Narric Rome, Vice President of Government Affairs and Arts Education, and Jeff Poulin, Arts Education Program Manager -- both are with Americans for the Arts.

Latest Arts Education Issues We Need to Know, Discuss, and Take Action:

1.a.  Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA): Narric and Jeff are experts on the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which is the re-authorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 and replaces the No Child Left Behind Act.

     ESSA mentions and allows for music and other arts in its definition of a well-rounded education and a number of other provisions that are arts-friendly are part of ESSA.  ESSA also gives more control to states on how ESSA will be implemented.

1.b.  Your Participation in the FLDOE Public Input Online Survey: The Florida Department of Education (FLDOE) has an online survey available to the public now  through July 22 to receive suggestions and comments about how Florida will meet  the new provisions outlined in ESSA.  Refer to 1.c. below for suggested recommendations.  Each state is required to submit to the U.S. DOE an accountability plan. 

1.c.  What are some suggestions arts education advocates in Florida can share on this FLDOE public input online survey?

     With the assistance of some of Florida's expert arts education professionals, ten (10) suggested recommendations were developed.  The Florida Cultural Alliance (FCA) shared these ten suggested recommendations on a July 6 Action Alert. FCA encourages all arts advocates to participate in the FLDOE public-input online survey before July 22.  Feel free to use these 10 suggested recommendations on page 2; edit them, or develop your own recommendations.  Our goal is to make sure that all of the artistic disciplines are included and that eligibility to funding is available for arts education in Florida's ESSA Accountability Plan.  

1.d.  IMPORTANT NOTE:  We'll discuss with Narric and Jeff updates and further recommended actions regarding ESSA.  For example, the U.S. Department of Education omitted "the arts" in the list of well-rounded education activities and coursework, instead listing only "music" in Section 299.19 of proposed regulations on Accountability and State Consolidated Plans regarding ESSA.  We'll get an update from Narric and Jeff to see if we need to directly communicate with DOE before August 1 to ensure it hears from all of us throughout this country regarding this omission or if this mistake has already been corrected.

If they believe we should communicate with DOE about this issue or other ESSA issues regarding direct input to the U.S. DOE, here is the contact and the link for public input:

Meredith Miller, U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Room 3C106
Washington DC 20202-2800

Public Comment Link Directly to U.S. Department of Education Regarding the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, As Amended By the Every Student Succeeds Act: Accountability and State Plans.  Once you're on the page, just look to the upper-right-hand corner and hit the "Comment Now" button. 

Ask that "the arts" be included in Section 299.19 of any final regulation just as other subjects and disciplines are listed.

1.e.  Arts and Design Added into  Career and Technical Education Bill
Number 2
  Please Engage in the 2016 Elections:

  Learn what your Florida Senate and House and U.S. Congressional districts are for the 2016 elections.  There are changes in some of Florida's Congressional districts and Florida Senate districts -- there might be changes in your districts.  You should have received your new voter registration card in the mail with your revised districts for the 2016 elections. 

Reach out to the candidates or those already elected who are running to represent your county in either the Florida Senate, Florida House, or U.S.Congress.  It's an opportunity to engage them in better understanding all the diverse values our industry brings to the economic and qualitative development of their communities and to our entire state.

See 2.b. below for a list of all 2016 Florida candidates organized by office and under the county or counties they represent or will represent in the Florida Legislature or U.S. Congress.  
2.b.  All 2016 Candidates by Florida Counties and Office (an Excel file with worksheets, and this information is subject to change if candidates drop off and it will change after the primary election on August 30)

2.c.  2016 Elections Calendar

2.d.   2016 Voter Registration Guide

2.e.   2016 Voter Registration Form 

   Candidates' Campaign Finance Information

2.g.  Florida Division of Elections 

2.i.   Here is the document that Marian Johnson from the Florida Chamber shared with us on our June statewide call regarding this year's elections. 
2.j.  Arts Action Fund Arts Speak at the 2016 Political Conventions

Number 3
2016 Informational and Opinion Surveys to Help Inform Candidates About Arts,
Arts Education, and Culture Issues

3.a.  2016 DRAFT of Florida PAC for Arts & Culture and Florida Cultural Alliance Florida Legislative Candidate Survey

3.b.  Please review the Backgrounds on Issues and encourage your candidates to read the background information first before they complete the easy-and-quick online survey. 
     We'll review and discuss the four key issues we want to educate both incumbents and new candidates about concerning Florida's annual investments in this creative industry.  This legislative-candidate survey is a tool to help focus us on key issues and inform and engage incumbents and new candidates.   

     Thank you for your cooperation and time, and I will be in touch with each of you when the final legislative-candidate survey is ready to use.

3.c.  10 Questions to Ask Congressional Candidates from Americans for the Arts

Number 4

Florida PAC for Arts & Culture

     Thanks to a fund raiser in Miami in partnership with Americans for the Arts Action Fund, the hard work of  Florida Cultural Alliance board members, and others throughout the state who contributed and secured contributions from friends and colleagues for the Florida PAC for Arts & Culture (FPAC), FPAC was able to contribute 18 campaign checks to candidates and their PACs before this year's legislative session. 

     The FPAC would like to make some additional Florida Legislative-campaign contributions before this year's election dates, but it must have contributions from you and others to make that possible. The Florida PAC for Arts & Culture is a separate entity from FCA, but FCA works in partnership with FPAC.

     Please make a contribution to FPAC -- you can safely make a contribution online
     We also encourage you to make a contribution to the national Arts Action Fund PAC.  It makes campaign contributions to congressional candidates, some based in Florida.  FPAC can only make Florida Legislative-candidate campaign contributions.

Number 5

Other Issues and News:

NEA Art Works Logo
5.a.  Take two minutes now to easily communicate to Florida's two U.S. Senators and your member of the U.S. House to support at least $150 million for the National Endowment for the Arts.  Go here to take action.  History of NEA appropriations.

5.b.  Have you joined the Americans for the Arts Action Fund?  Please add you name to arts advocates from throughout the U.S. to demonstrate that there are millions of us who care about arts, arts education, and culture.  Join free here.

Invite Key on Keyboard
5.c.  Members of Congress are back in their home states through September 2 and then back again in their home states during October.  It's a perfect time to invite them to one or more of your events so they experience first hand the value of Florida's arts, arts education, and culture programs.  Americans for the Arts created an easy email link that you can use, edit, and invite your member of Congress to one or more of your events.  We encourage you to participate.   
5.d.  Please join or renew your Florida Cultural Alliance membership when you receive your invoice.  As you know, FCA's statewide work is totally dependent upon annual membership dues.  You and your organization make our work possible.  Thank you for your support and follow through.

5.e.  Other issues or news from you?

Call Key
Number 5
Mark Your Calendars for Future
FCA Statewide Calls

All Calls are on Mondays from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. EST: 

August 15 
September 12 
October 17 
December 12
November 14 

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  Post Office Box 2131
 West Palm Beach, FL 33402-2131