UPDATE on SB 789 (Price)

Last Thursday, August 16, the fate of SB 789 (Price) was decided when the Assembly Appropriations Committee voted to 'hold' the bill. That means that it will not be eligible for further hearings this year and so has effectively run its course. As the original sponsors of the bill the Alliance was disappointed by the decision. We believe the bill offered an important opportunity for schools to demonstrate their commitment to creativity and innovation across the curriculum, by creating an index that would measure access to those learning opportunities.

But while this piece of legislation won’t become law, it has succeeded in raising awareness about the importance of creativity and innovation in our schools. The bill was a catalyst for numerous news stories over the past year, hundreds of letters of support to state legislators and Joint Committee on the Arts hearing in Sacramento that drew a standing room only crowd as well as a robust audience streaming live. In addition, the bill’s language was integrated into larger accountability legislation (SB 547 Steinberg), marking the first time that creativity and innovation were being considered as measurable components of a complete educational experience.

The Alliance thanks Senator Curren Price and his staff for their commitment to the legislation and to our lobbyist, Kathy Lynch, who worked tirelessly on behalf of the bill. We also want to acknowledge the 'creator' of the bill, Dan Hunter of Massachusetts, where similar legislation was passed, who worked with us to develop the legislation and lobbied for its passage. Lastly, we thank arts education advocates in California for communicating their support to legislators and recognizing that creativity is not frill but a necessary agent for reviving the state economy and our public schools.