tv Government Access Programming SFGTV March 19, 2019 3:00am-4:01am PDT
thank you very much for listening. [applause] >> my name is courtney lindell and i'm the building union represent and middle schoolteachers and was published in the fall in one of the most highly reviewed peer education music journals. i'm ask you to reallocate the p funding to stop educational inequity. i teach at the number one middle school. we have six vapa teachers. you can't tell me kids on the other side of the city are getting the same education because they don't have the same access. require each school to have one vapa teacher for every 200 students and unit peef to fund it. before the massive art cuts in the 1980 es, every school had
vapa teachers, arts, orchestra, and choir. the federal government recognized vapa as a core back in the 1990's. parents' top school choices are always the school with the sequential arts and music programs. every teacher in the school resigned cohort recommended making music and arts a core course but the district won't listen. and it makes sense that all the parents want kids to have focus in the arts. a recent study found that musicians' brains are larger than nonmusicians. i've seen kids that don't want
to go to school all of a sudden have a reason to come. we have an abbottee program in this district. wire one vapa teacher per 200 students, be arts advocates. thank you. >> president cook: thank you. [applause] >> hello. my name is travis guyer. i'm currently a band teacher at presidio middle school, and i just wanted to talk to you guys a little bit about what we do with our peef budget. so every year, i'd have to say that i have over 200 students a year, and i have to say that we use all of our budget pretty quickly. if you can imagine between pairs and everything else, it goes pretty quickly. most of our instruments are from the 60's or earlier, and they're falling apart. when we go somewhere to
perform, i usually bring paper clips and tape just to hold them together. in addition, the funding for peef also funds our jazz band, and we only have -- i'm not sure if any other middle schools in the school district are teaching jazz band right now, but that's directly funded by peef and without that funding -- we're not really sure what's happening to that funding, that would be no more. i'd also like to sort of say about -- about what may or may not be happening with our vapa department, i can personally say with my experience with one of our vapa directors, these prepare with very, very, very equity based. one of these individuals is -- i was blessed enough to have as
a very mucher and my entire mission statement, all my goals in teaching would not be what they are without this individual. so i'm asking you guys to really recompany all the things that vapa does and all the things that peef does throughout the district. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, travis. my name's veronica bottini, and i work across the haul from travis, and i work at stringer middle school. i've been here longer than the lady who had the peef discussion. i know how important music has been to me. i taught privately for 30 years. i decided to go and jump through all the hoops, become a credentialed teacher and teach
sequential music at presidio. 17th year. gets harder every year, but i'm there every saturday, repairing instruments. i believe in public education, i believe in equity. we have a lot of asians in our school, but we have students from el salvador, viet nam. i have one student, father vietnamese, mother, mexican, and she's going to be in the summer music program, free instrument access. i have violins that were bought in the 60's. they were new when i went to presidio, and the necks are warping. but we don't buy new ones. no one can stretch a penny like a music teacher.
we have the manner plan in san francisco that i was hired upon in 2003-2004 to have sequential from kindergarten through high school uninterrupted. the brain that courtney was talking about, the research has been done. they have functional m.r.i.s -- when you are playing an instrument in a large group, every part of your brain is lighting up, and they are doing serious studies on alzheimer's -- >> president cook: i'm sorry. [inaudible] >> president cook: yeah. we have 100 more people behind you. please be respectful to the people behind you. [inaudible] [applause] >> hi. my name is shannon garrity.
i at the point visual art for vapa. and there is no doubt in my mind that you have the very intentions that i do, too, to serve everyone in this district. there is no doubt in my mind that you support arts education. i also understand that you have rules to follow, and you have to take as one person said a finite amount of money and support -- take a finite amount of money and support teachers and line items. but i live your budget every day, and i am here to give you the human vision of what it is that your line items mean. last year, i taught in four different elementary schools. by the end of the school year, i taught over 1100 students. my budget is 1250.
$1,250. let's do the pamath. that is 1.25 per student for art per year. the world economic forum, published in january 2019 the top ten skills that leaders around the world are critical for problem solving 2019. this is all art. i don't doubt that you don't value art. i know you value art, but i need to live it and see it in my daily live because it's really hard to stand in front of a group of kids with three glue sticks and say figure it out. the vapa department helps me
figure it out. [applause] >> hello. my name is ana kearney. am i waiting? >> president cook: yeah. i just want to call some more names. i know that people are passionate about this issue. i have about 50 more names here. i'm going to read them out. just remember that there are folks behind you. just give me one second. p.j. ryman. peter gobocic. what's up, peter. peter raymond, pat zamora, eleanor watabe. >> watanabe. >> president cook: watanabe.
carrie gray, sylvia sherman. carrie, you're here twice. jessica bush man -- bushan. >> hi. my name is ana kearney, and i teach vocal and guitar. i'm a professional musician and a performer, and i've come from the professional world to become a teacher because of my passion for educating youth. okay. so let's talk about two things, the ittinerate teachers. if you have extra funding, i'm not wondering -- i'm wondering why you're not giving it to
itinerate teachers, a lot of whom are living for their cars. why didn't we doing it for our public school elementary school students who also deserve a more rounded education? nobody works harder than a music student and creativity and innovation are supposed to be part of the fabric of america. how many great artists have come from america to the public school? i'll name you one. louie armstrong. so the second is vapa administrators. i have worked on coordinating the all-city musikfest value, and i want to say without the vapa administration, it could be so much harder for us to run that festival which is basically run by a -- volunteer teachers. mr. daniel was very instrumental in getting a bus to run people from one side of
the city to the other so everybody could participate in all-city. this is a partnership, and if that partnership goes away, we're sort of like a group of artists without a leader. now, i understand what the subject is here. but the first speaker here -- okay. i'll stop. go for it, everybody. [applause] >> president cook: thank you for stopping. >> hello. my name is alice mosley. i'll be brief. i am one of the afore mentioned music teachers, and i'll tell you it is very tricky. we have very little time. it's tlilg to see t-- thrillin to see the students, it's thrilling to see their parents, and it's thrilling to see their eyes light up. i think it does reach all areas, and many people have
referred to the research linking music to literacy innovation. however you try to divide it up, i think that now robbing peter to pay paul is not the way to be going forward. we should be looking for more funding for all of the apartmenarts and p.e., not saying we're going to take it out of one pot and put it in the other, so thank you very much. [applause] >> hello. my name is peter ryman or p.j. i teach vocal arts in san francisco, and i'm here to talk about vapa.
according to vapa, their mission is to provide increased access and equity to sequential -- quality sequential programs, in my two years of teaching on the east side, i notice a discrepancy in the program. some schools do offer stand-alone courses. willie brown has a single choir taught about a security guard, balboa has two taught by a math teacher. overall programming is inconsistent, nonsequential and fails to begin students on a developmental pathway. because of inequity inaccess, many freshman show up day one, having never sung in a choir or seen sheet music, furthermore, this means east side middle schoolers lack the vocal requirements to have a vocal
try out in the vocal art does. every secondary site needle sequential vocal and instrumental music. use the 2.3 million to fund sequential programming. thank you for taking a deeper look into what i've experienced as a serious miss on behalf of vapa and the district. [applause] >> good evening. i'm peter goverton. elementary music teacher for 31ers i can't. i grew up in pre-prop 13. i saw the diversity of culture respected in music, art, dance and drama programs sequentially all the way from kindergarten,
and i was happy to march with tom ammiano on prop h. i was thinking it was going to come back, and 76.8 million, and it has never come back. i want to tell you, i've never heard anything from the vapa superintendents except fighting for the issues in the bayview that i live and work at and teach. i have to say from our fellow educators as well as site administrators are crucial. so i went to the c.a.c., and i asked the c.a.c. an important question. are you willing to have an ongoing relationship with san francisco unified faculty, the people that made these diverse curriculums. i did not receive an answer. i'm asking you the same question. can we have a relationship and ongoing dialogue? we can't tear these kids like
solomon. they can only be in one place at the same time, and all of the answer is not money. having them at a particular place and getting the minutes when they have to do six weeks of test preparation, that's not money. so thank you for considering that. and i put it to you to please answer the question publicly, all of you, can we have an ongoing relationship on how to get this thing happened, the people that have been educated with a lot of degrees on how to do this stuff. i respect every member of the community to standup for what they've seen in the arts. i've seen it, i've lived it. let's help each other, let's work together. [applause] >> hi. my name's eleanor watanabe, and i'm a senior at george washington high school. i'm in the band, orchestra, and the choir.
really what started it was the middle school, going through and seeing how hard the teachers would work for us, and we're also severely underfunded, how most of our money seems to leave before the school year even starts from miss hendricks making all the practice rooms to all the money seems to be fund raised from the students. even though how busy their lives are, all of my music teachers are here to support us, and i think that's pretty cool, so yeah. [applause] >> hi. thank you for letting us speak. my name is sarah lawrence and i'm a parent of two kids in san francisco unified school district. my oldest son is a freshman at lowell in advanced orchestra, and my youngest son is in 7th grade in middle school in the
honor band. they both have participated in the solo and small ensemble festival. that's something that we need to keep, in my opinion. sorry, i have my notes because i'm a little nervous. sorry. okay. the music education that they are receiving at their schools are -- are turning them into the fine young men that they are becoming, and guiding them on career paths that they wouldn't eyes have. i think that vapa is very important, and vapa administration. if that's what the music and art teachers need to help the teachers, you know, get whatever they need going. i don't know anything about budget, but i do know that this
program is important to my kids and their friends, so please don't take away the vapa money. please consider it, and happy birthday dr. matthews. [applause] >> hi. i'm michael palladino. i'm the president of the board of the music alliance in the bay area. we work here with the public schools. i really appreciate commissioner sanchez' clarification about what this is really about, because i was around when p started. the idea was peef was supposed to be enhancing funding for the arts, not replacing general t budget for administrative funds. um i don't think it's clear what you're actually trying to accomplish, which is actually a good goal. i think that before you actually take money out of the
vapa to move it to sport, moha a comprehensive sports master plan, have a plan of when you're going to move it over, and not just have a unilateral things like this. you're going in the right direction, but there needs to be more education and planning. [applause] >> hi. everybody's been a little bibb fuzzy on this microphone tonight. i'm carrie gray. i'm district of the p.t.a. there's 64 p.t.a. schools, including two of the schools you heard from tonight, marshall elementary and visitacion valley elementary. so the reason you had two speaker cards for me, mr. cook, is originally, i was invited to commend the board and the school for its ongoing support for arts equity in our
district. we are an example in the state of california and in the country for our arts master plan, our intentional sequential curriculum and how we've been supporting working artists as well as family and emerging arts professionals. good job, sfusd. however, last night, wow. i was really confused, and so what i'd like to do is i'd like to urge you just to wait a moment before making a decision about an amendment to the peef recommendation from our superintendent. several people have mentioned some of the concerns that the p.t.a.s share. primarily, if you take money from the vapa administration, from the peef budget, and we're expected to fill in from sfusd's budget, i'm going to be here in six months asking for
sfusd not to cut those administrator vapa positions. we've seen the budget. there's not a lot of money floating around for new administration and new programs. we're trying to work with what we have. the intention in 2008-2009 was to fill in for a really stretched district budget that could no longer support the arts to the level which we expected. i'd also like to mention, nothing i've heard here tonight, because people have mentioned waiting on the arts master plan, why aren't we waiting to see what happens with the excess from the eraf funding? there's $9 million for peef still in play, and so i urge you to wait until that's been decided, as well. thank you all for your time. i could speak on this for a long time.
[applause] >> good evening. i'm sylvia sherman. i'm the executive director with the community music center. we wa we pride ourselves on being a partner with the school district and the visual and performing arts department so that every kid who wants to study music has a chance to do that with the tuition assistance and scholarships necessary to make equitiable access possible. we have found in vapa partners with the administration who nominate kids and provide pathways for them to receive, just from cmc, over $2 million in tuition assistance, but also access to a number of the city's organizations who provide opportunities for kids.
additionally, in the past three years, we've been a proud partner of vapa in the mariachi program. you heard martha talk about that issue, and this was something that vapa started in the school district, realizing that some of the kids were not receiving the benefits that are awarded by so participating in the arts. that a mariachi had a chance as a culturally responsible program to allow children and families that might not otherwise participate. so we've seen the results of that. i'm glad you were able to announce the big concert coming up on thursday, but building on this initiative like the mariachi program, that addresses equity problems in the district, that the master plan refresh is building on that. and vapa administrators have
been very much at the forefront, listening to all of the hundreds of people who have been providing feedback to align with that and pitch and school and initiatives. [applause] >> president cook: i'm sorry, marcus. are we -- go ahead. push the button. >> i am a proud -- it's not working too well. [inaudible] >> okay. here we go. i am a proud parent of two daughters in this district. one at soda and one at buena vista-horace mann. i just want to urge the board to take their time, to pause, to not replace these funds, not to defund this program. i have been a teaching artist in -- as well for the last two decades here, working at rooftop and many other schools. i know i don't have to stand
here and tell you how important the arts are. i have seen is -- it first hard, working with kids in juvenile haul, working at some of our less advantaged schools, and i'm worried that there is no plan in place if we defund this program. there's nothing that i've seen, nothing clear, and the kids that are going to be hurt the most are the kids that are going to be left advantaged, kids -- children who are black and brown for the most part and going to these schools and don't have the access to arts and music that other kids might have. so i am urging this board to pause, and i have many colleagues. i'm standing here in solidarity with them that work at vapa as teaching artists, and i just want to stand in support of them and the many different
schools what have been doing this work who are the experts and who have been trained in leading this up to the schools. so that's what i'm here for, and i just want to thank you for this opportunity to speak. [applause] >> president cook: before you get started, i'm going to call some more names up. todd berman, roberto hernandez, karen siegel, melissa scott, julia roberts-fong, jill daneen, robin saunders, an
amarie tillian, bill armstrong, sierra ortiz, joseph churchill, isabella palomonde. go ahead. you can -- you can begin. >> my name is jessica buchsman. i'm a parent at new tradition elementary school. my two boys have directly benefited from the district's vapa program and funding with vapa teachers in their schools. i'm also a product of sfusd schools? i've had kids in the district for the last eight years so i've been through and seen many struggles for funding. so i was saddened but not surprised this afternoon to receive a distress call from our school community? i even left my eight-year-old at home with my 13-year-old in
order to be here. and i'm still here, even though a lot of people have already said what needs to be said because i want the teachers to know that they have parents' support. to the board, we're counting on you as our elected representatives to fund the arts. through vapa, through the peef as it exists, the last-minute change that we heard about today feels really sudden, inappropriately so in a district that's supposed to be democratic and open to the participation of families and constituents. we really need to know that replacement funding is in place before the existing funding is yanked. i thank you all and the rest of us in this room and probably everyone else who sends their kids to school in the district care about the arts. i care deeply about the arts.
and i ask you to please maintain the vapa funding. [applause] >> hello. my name is todd berman. i'm the executive director of the arts education alliance in the bay area. we provide arts programming in collaboration with the public schools. a lot of our board members are here tonight representing the cause and actually came here to give general public comment, and a lot of us came here for this purpose and kind of got worried about the vapa funding and change plans, but i want to stick to the plan, and i want to urge the board to adopt the declaration of the rights of all students to equity and arts learning. let's do this to become part of a statewide movement, the
create california movement, and to affirm that this is a belief that san francisco, to put creativity and the arts first and make is successful and available to every student, that we will teach the whole child. we can use this declaration to lay the groundwork for what we can do with the arts education master plan. we could use it to hold charter schools accountable. and i just want to say that putting art at the center of learning, it deepens learning for soall students, and for so students, it literally saves
their lives, so let's get this on the agenda for a future meeting to say that san francisco supports all students getting taught to the whole child, everyone getting arts, sequential learning, arts that also recognize their cultural heritage and their background and affirms their identity. thank you. [applause] >> good ulevening. thank you for your service to the children of san francisco. my name is karen segal, and i've taught music for the past 20 years in public and private schools, and i've been teaching with the district since 2002. i am pleased, proud and feel very blessed to currently be serving as a music teacher at rule wallenberger -- raoul wallenberger high school.
both schools i teach at serve primarily underserved black-brown and economically discharged students who have had little or no previous access to music education. i teach them to express them creatively, to collaborate and learn music production recording, skills they can use as careers and earn well above minimum wage. both of my positions are vapa funded and i am concerned that students will lose these programs if the vapa funding is cut. during the summ this is, i am concerned what
our students will lose if the vapa budget is cut. just down the road from district offices is international high school, a high-end public school where students have access to a state-of-the-art recording studio. i believe that sfusd students should also have access and opportunities to use such technology as a strife to fund and raise a music production department at wallenberger high school, thank you, vapa, because i don't know who would administrated this if they weren't there. thank you. [applause] >> buenas noches. my name is brian hernandez, and in 1961, i went to britain school, and i was for bidden to speak spanish.
the only song i remember the teacher teaching us is mary had a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb. and that's what we were taught going to bryan school. and then, as i grew up and got mentored by cesar chavez and everybody, i became a community organizer, and i worked on a statewide initiative to get bilingual education in our schools. because when i went to school, i got suspended for speaking spanish in school. and that was here in san francisco. in 1992, when arlene ackerman was the superintendent of public schools, she came to my house for breakfast and says, what should i do to fix the
schools? and i said let's take a walk after breakfast to flynn elementary school which at that time was primarily black and african american and latino and black kids. i said the majority of these kids are late to school, there's no p.t.a. why don't we start a dance program, and have the kids come out in carnival every year. we did, and since then, we've worked with over 9,000 children. i've seen these children in the parade. they start off with first grade -- we have got kids that graduated from college that are now teaching music in these schools. it's important to be able to feed the hearts, the souls, and the spirit and the minds of our
children with cotura, la cotura cuda, gracias. >> if evenigood evening. my name is jill, and i'm a professional musician. hello, arts community. how are you doing? so i'm pleased to see such great turnout tonight. i'm here to represent the students that aren't here. peef serves 6400 students in the district alone, and all of the funding come -- from our program comes from peef funding. i want to remind everyone that equity is not just about equal access at any common level of quality, it's about being really student centered and looking at what individual communities, schools, and
students need and being culturally responsible in a culturally responsive way. that's what the vapa is trained to help us deliver on. they help us identifying gaps and needs for kids, and they make sure we're able to provide those services infoto the stud. arts are the way into the hearts and minds and transformative experiences for students. so i urge you to reconsider, baby. reconsider, baby. [applause] >>io >>io98 --
[inaudible] >> -- and scrap, and i've -- i started my work with the school district with the residency program placing artists in the schools. i worked many years on that. i worked many different things, but i'm constantly into cals. either the funding, a situation where they're placed or people who don't have the time or the energy anymore to concentrate on children's work. and i really am extremely discouraged at this point. i just hope you reconsider this folly in a way. it's a folly, and i just want to really tell you that i'm very troubled by the problems of the district.
thank you. [applause] >> good evening. my name is robin saunders. i come from a music background myself, run a 23 piece band for 25 years. have always been centered on music programs in our school district and the bay area at large and have known from a very early age that children listen more carefully when you deliver things in the form of music and art. i really believe in the power of san francisco. i've been so proud to be from san francisco. i also lived through the prop
13. i know for a fact that our city and state took a dive -- we used to be number one, number two, and what are we now? 49 in the entire united states? it's because the children are not being given always the opportunity for express themselves, feel comfortable about learning and listening. we need to make sure -- i had something else planned to say, but so many other people have said the things that i wanted to touch on. but i want to make sure that everybody remembers the power that the arts have on children's learning. it's a proven researched -- more and more research comes out. i went to a thing at sf jazz
>> -- that the vapa department and the administrators in the vapa department have done a very fine job not just for the students in our school but for all the schools in the district. and there's no art program that can be effective without administration. as wonderful as these art teachers here that we heard speak, they can't do the job that they have to do without an administrator. [applause] >> there are three programs in particular that come to mind that our children with strongly represented at buena vista
horace mann. that would be the mariachi night. the sfusd arts festival, which is coming up is another opportunity for our students to show their work to the city, all the city. and the all-city music festival is equally important and dependent on the work of vapa. please reconsider. these people are doing a very fine job. they benefit all our students. thank you. [applause] >> i'd like to thank you all first of all for the opportunity to speak up and say my part in this.
my name is joseph churchill, and i can say that i know the san francisco unified school district very well from the inside out, being that i'm now vapa ittinerant arts school and serving at the end of the year over 1600 students. i am also a product of the san francisco unified school district. i went to andrew jackson elementary school. i went to cabrillo elementary school. and you wonder why so many elementary schools. we had a retrofit for earthquakes. i graduated from washington high school in the late 80's.
i went to roosevelt elementary school, and i'm very thankful i had the opportunity at roosevelt to be in band. it didn't allow me to take the visual arts because that was my elective, but that stayed with me until now. i'm a musician now, but i'm a visual artist because i worked very hard after barely graduating from washington high school, okay? i'm telling you that i know it from the inside out. i worked hard at city college, 13th grade, to get myself into a four-year college, and that's where i realized no, you're an artist, and i graduated from the studio art department, came back, and was given the opportunity by my mean of students. so it takes advocates for the students. that's what i'm being right now. so i want you guys to reconsider this because i'm
doing the good work, and i lived it -- [inaudible] >> here we go. thank you. my name is alyssa scott. i'm here on performing arts workshop. we're a nonprofit arts education provider in the bay area public schools for over 50 years? and we acknowledge the issues that happening with vapa that may be influencing the discussion today and we acknowledge the discussion is being brought to the table, but the proposed redirection of funds doesn't address the
access to public education. vapa, their role is to fill in the gaps. for example, we actually interface with vapa legal requirements for funding which provides safeguards for our students. we hear and understand that the call for less admin and oversight and for more -- not oversight -- for less admin and more direct services because of this mission of equity that we are all here for. however, we feel like we're finally starting to get transparency with vapa for understanding the arts and education in san francisco. i think that's what we're here for, is to be more efficient with our funding. born and raised in san francisco. just came back, working again in the community that gave me -- put me here, and so on behalf of the performing arts
workshop and myself as an individual, i strongly urge you to at least take a pause at others have said tonight and think about where that supplemental funding would come from. if not from peef's end, we' we're -- let us know, because we'd like to know about that extra funding, if possible. >> i'm khaira petes. i'm here tonight to say my work in arts education nonprofit sector has proved time over time that the public has a great desire for better and equitiable access to the arts. i urge you to keep the money that is allocated for funding vapa for vapa. i personally don't understand how this move of funds will address inequity in the arts.
please focus on strengthening vapa. thank you. [applause] >> good evening. my name's isabel portman. i'm a senior at george washington high school, an a.p. arts student and president of the student art society. art classes have allowed me resources and a safe space to explore and understand my own emotions more than any other experience in my life. for much of my life i've struggled with low self-esteem and the impact that bullying has had on me, and the only way i've found anything effective. art is absolutely essential in the mental well-being, growth,
and happiness of sfusd students. i also have the privilege of running more informal art classes at school. for many, it is a place that we can feel involved in the school community and have a creative outlet, and they have a lot of fun. art has been proven a successful form of therapy for students with special needs, and some of those units help me with my duties, like handing out colored pencils and paper, help people find their seats, and cleaning up after lunch. at my school, we support each other, we give creative criticism, and most importantly, we love each other. in taking money from the vapa department, the school would be defunding a department that promotes mental health,
friendshipshi friendship, well-being, and community. >> my name is julie. i'm a parent of a kindergartener and a second grader so most of what's happened with the arts in our school has happened during the school day. it was interesting to learn last night in third grade is when we start learning some of the inequities. so i haven't seen, you know, sort of what the more opt in -- what the issues of equity have looked like around vapa, but what i have seen is the peef c.a.c., which is an advisory committee, where folks looked at thoughtfully, the school sites, and they looked at
existing proposals, and they gave advise. and their advise was to make sure that services go to sites, and we move away from administration. it was to focus on equity. folks really wanted to make sure that each school site has a social worker? and so i'm -- i feel like one of the narratives that's coming out here is this recommendation is a surprise? so i assume the peef c.a.c. presents these recommendations again and again and specifically drawing issues with vapa administration, i feel like the only way that that would be a surprise to staff is if we never intended that advisory committee's recommendatio recommendations not to be taken seriously. i thought one of the good recommendations we'll be moving forward is having site folks and educators as a part of the peef c.a.c. as i've been talking to folks who are site coordinators, i've heard mixed things that
sometimes vapa doesn't support arts in school, and i have to wonder the testimony i'm hearing about old instruments, when we're sending $2.3 million into school is the best piece of funding. thank you. [applause] >> president cook: i also have jessica bloom up here, if you're still here. go ahead. >> hi. i'm lainie, and i have two kids. i've also on the peef c.a.c., and one of the first recommendations that i'd like to make is to meet with you earlier in this practices. it's really difficult to have spent so many hours, heard from so many people who have taken the time out of their evening to meet with us, give us public comment. we take that to heart, put it in our recommendations, and it gets kind of she horned into this process. if we can meet with you, even earlier in the registration
packet, suggesting we meet two or three times a year. we only meet with you once, and it's certainly not our intention to surprise the public and make the public come and spend more time and have more stress. i personally believe that the arts are an essential part of programming -- programming at our schools. i've benefited, my kids have benefited. i have great concerns, however, about equity and access at our schools throughout the district. k-12, all site. that came up quite a bit in our public comments in our conversations on the peef c.a.c. and our recommendations were that more of the visual and performing arts central office administrative staffing funding be reallocated in order to support direct student services at the school site level. we heard from so many people that kids do not have access to
instruments, instruments are broken, the materials are not available. at different sites, there's different things being offered. we have not seen a consistent inventory, yet, we've seen a growing administrative central office budget over the many years that vapa has been in -- oh, shoot. well, there you go. i have more to say, but i really appreciate all the comments, and i appreciate the clarification that this is not -- that this is what peef funding is focused on, which is direct and equitiable focus to students. hopefully -- [inaudible] [applause] >> my name is jessica golm, and i'm a stay at home mom and
arrest activit artist, and i'm a school volunteer. at the beginning of my school year, my cochair and i decided to ratchet up some of our action items because we found that there were some red flags in providing opportunities for kids in the classroom to do art, music, dance, drama droug throughout the school year. it's resulted in permanent art, teachers feeling supported that they can be able to deliver art in our classroom in a regular basis. we've been able to celebrate and engage kids, parents, and
teachers arc collaborative cultural art projects. our school has come up with some really surprising creative, colorful, joyful, and peaceful action that help sunnyside kids learn. so we're real evidence of new studies that come out like the one out of houston from rice effort that says that arts learning experiences benefit students in terms of reductions and disciplinary infractions to others, improvements to writing achievement and school as spirations and college engagement. i would take a page from the art of fine walkining walking. never go out without one cord in one hand and the other in
another. thank you for keeping vapa in pla place. [applause] >> president cook: thank you for your comments. we will now open this up to comments from the board and superintendent. commissioner lopez? lopez lopez >> commissioner lopez: so i want to start by thanking everyone for coming out and telling us about the importance of arts in our classroom. i completely understand the effectiveness, the positive work that this does for your children, especially low-income children of color. so in hearing that, what i really want to reiterate is we are not cutting the funds for these programs. what we're focusing on is the amount of money that's being spent on administration and the amount of time and information that we've asked forhe