Well, that’s just the misguided theory that the California State Assembly has unanimously endorsed.
I reported on AB 2446 over a month ago. Unfortunately, it has been unanimously approved by the California Assembly and if approved by the Senate, and if signed into law by Governor Schwarzenegger, well, that’s that for the time being.
Its author, Warren
Furutani (D-Gardena) says in a statement on his website that “the
intent … is to increase high school graduation rates, which is an
So, what’s the big deal here you may ask? So what if high school students can opt out of the arts in exchange for a Career and Technical Education course?
Well, first, one course in Career and Technical Education does not a CTE education make. I understand, that argument could be used for the arts. However, what is being posited here is that the CTE course could help these kids find a job or be better prepared for a job. That flies in the face of best practices in CTE. The best CTE programs also include rigorous academics, including the arts. And, a Career and Technical Education which is as the name would suggest, being very skill oriented and grounded workforce training and preparedness, doesn’t happen in a single course of anything.
The real kicker here is the creation of a de facto caste system, whereby only those on a pathway to college are required to take the arts. Those who may go on to a vocation, well, they don’t need the arts do they? As the son of a stagehand and a secretary, I find that offensive.
What is more, in a state such as California, which has such a significant creative sector, you would have to wonder how this could be on the verge of being possible. Perhaps the Governor will remember his roots here and veto the thing.
I sure wish there was more that I could do to help our friends at the California Alliance for Arts Education than just saying shame on you to all the members of the California State Assembly.