Monday, July 26, 2010


The meeting was called to order at 7:36 PM (CST) when a quorum of members were present. Eight members were present for the meeting.

A. IN ATTENDANCE: Dan Caruso, Pam Gibberman, Oscar Forseman, Bob Lague, Tom McLaughlin, Jack Rowe, Kathi Zamora.  ABSENT: Steve DiNenno, Charles Fry (technical difficulties), Sue Lemmo (personal commitment), Rich Nicklay (personal commitment), Deb Turici (PSEA Conference)

B. CORRESPONDANCE: We have been in correspondence with many since the RA gaveled out.
  • NEA PILOT PROGRAM--We contacted Lily Eskelsen and Becky Pringle about the NEA Pilot Project. All of the first round of forms have been forwarded to the NEA.
  • CAUCUS RECOGNITION FORM--We have filed a Caucus Recognition Form with Stephen Behrer of NEA. It has been some time since this information was updated. The last chair of record in the NEA Offices are for Charles Turner as chair.
  • RA 2011 MEETING ROOMS--The NEA staff contact for meeting space and logistical assistance for the NEA Representative Assembly (RA) is Frances Coble in NEA Conference and Facilities Management (202/822-7644; Ms. Coble has been contacted with a Caucus Meeting Room request.
  • INACTIVE MEMBERSHIP DRIVE--Each non-renewing member was contacted and sent complimentary materials. When the rejoin the NEA FAC” caucus email was sent to each of last year’s non-renewing members, three people responded that they had indeed rejoined. We do not have their paperwork but the FAC Board decided there must have been a mechanical/clerical error and that we should honor their requests.
  • ACTIVE MEMBERS--Each member has been sent an e-Newsletter, scholarship application, state caucus membership forms and more. Each caucus member has been invited to join each of our social networking/technology sites.
  • DIRECTORY—Two versions exist: one publishable, one not publishable. Several of the email addresses in the directory “bounced” back. They have been identified in the most recent directory.
  • UNFINISHED 2009 NBI BUSINESS--We have written NEA Director of Teacher Quality Segue Eubanks about NBI #36 from the 2009 RA. Research was completed, reports were written and disseminated to state affiliate presidents, executive directors and policy makers in Departments of Education. We have requested that this information be sent to us.
  • REGIONAL CONFERENCES--Each of the NEA Regional Offices has been contacted. We have asked for a caucus meeting room in each of the regional offices. We have heard back from only three of the offices: Midwestern Regional, Western and Northeastern Regions. Western Region has confirmed our request. Midwest Regional and Western Regional offices are not ready to process requests at this time.
  • THANK YOU NOTES--Thank you letters have been sent to Stephen Martinez and Mr. Ramirez for their assistance in costing our items at the RA.
  • NBI 86--President Van Roekel’s office has been contacted concerning NBI 86. His office has thanked us for our request and our kind words. He will be contacting us when work on NBI’s begins. We hope that our e-Fine Arts Task Force is activated in a timely manner.
C. MATERIALS: The following documents are complete: revised scholarship application, revised membership forms, 2010 directory, the post-RA newsletter, state organizing grid, regional organizing grid. There is also a kit on our YAHOO GROUPS site that is a “state caucus” starters guide including: sample signs, sample membership forms, sample agendas, etc.


D. TECHNOLOGY UPDATES— We are up and running in five locations with five purposes. External communication through BLOGGER; Internal communication, listserv, file hosting through YAHOO GROUPS; daily/frequent updates at FACEBOOK; daily/frequent updates at TWITTER and NING for chatting live. The TWITTER & FACEBOOK sites are not working as planned. A non-profit version of these has been created that displays less “junk.” We will wait for a while before we relaunch.
The website has been organized with a “TOPIC CLOUD” on the sidebar to make it easier for folks to find material. Here is a “hit list” since our July launch.
  • Page Loads 835 Unique Visitors 365 First Time Visitors 259 Returning Visitors 106
  • Returning Visitors - Based purely on a cookie, if this person is returning to your website for another visit an hour or more later
  • First Time Visitors - Based purely on a cookie, if this person has no cookie then this is considered their first time at your website.
  • Unique Visitor - Based purely on a cookie, this is the total of the returning visitors and first time visitors - all your visitors.
  • Page Load - The number of times your page has been visited. 
E. CAUCUS GUIDELINES—Executive board members were given the NEA Caucus Guidelines. The NEA FAC was discussed item #1 listed below. We must be cautious in the alliances and work we do outside of Association meetings.
  • Continuance of Recognition:
  • Once recognition has been granted to a caucus, such recognition shall continue unless and until the Executive Committee rescinds or suspends the recognition. The Executive Committee may rescind or suspend the recognition of a caucus for the following reasons:
  • 1. The caucus uses its connection with NEA for any purpose other than attempting to influence NEA governance;
  • 2. The caucus purports to speak for, or act on behalf of, NEA; or
  • 3. Fails to comply with the provisions of these Guidelines. 
F. CONSTITUTION—Executive Board members were asked to read and consider the “proposed” new mission and purpose statements:
  • The NEA Fine Arts Caucus is established: 
  • 1. to promote fine arts and fine arts education in all public schools in the US;
  • 2. to influence the creation and maintenance of policy responsive to the needs of fine arts educators within the state affiliates and NEA;
  • 3. to actively work toward the implementation of policy through participation and influence on NEA committees and governance bodies;
  • 4. to provide a mechanism to support candidates for NEA office who will most benefit the cause of furthering Fine Arts Education within the ISEA.
  • 5. to provide a mechanism by which NEA fine arts educators and advocates may introduce recommendations, secure support, and initiate action on concerns of fine arts members at the national, state and local level;
  • 6. to introduce, enact and monitor “pro-arts” new business items, legislative initiatives and resolutions at the annual NEA Representative Assembly;
  • 7. to increase awareness among all educators of the need of fine arts specialists in the regular school program;
  • 8. to build a base on arts advocates who will work with arts educators to promote the goals of the caucus.

G. NEA FAC SCHOLARSHIP--Applications were sent to each active member. We have received one completed application and expect at least one more.

There was a request to explore the criteria for the scholarship in regards to family members. Bob Lague and Jack Rowe reported that it was designed to benefit a member of the caucus or his/her family. Oscar Forsman reported being involved in several organizations that reward only family members.

The Scholarship Committee will be Bob Lague, Pam Gibberman and Jack Rowe. Tom will send applications to these members. The scholarship due date is August 15, 2010.

H. DUES STATEMENT—It was suggested that we publish how dues dollars are spent. The consensus of the group is that this does not need to be done formally.

I. STATE & REGIONAL ORGANIZATION-- As we discussed the regional/state caucus organizing grid there was a discussion of the “next step” for organizing our caucuses. Northeastern and Western Regions seem to be historically strongest for our caucus. There was some discussion of how a strong leader(s) tends to keep the group growing and focused.

The consensus of the group was that we should focus on organizing state caucuses prior to doing much with regional organizing. We discussed states where “clusters” of membership fall this year.

The attached grids demonstrate areas and regions of strength.
It was decided that each board member will explore and initiate actions for a state caucus in their state affiliate. Members will report progress at our next meeting.

NOTE: In a pre-meeting discussion Pam Gibberman and Tom McLaughlin discussed reorganizing California FAC. Joe Bartell, a member of the NEA FAC, will work with Pam to get the wheels turning to reorganize/restore California. In order to be effective in California, folks need to be on the state council. Pam will explore this process with Joe Bartell.

J. LOGO CONTEST-- Jack Rowe will put together some criteria for the “new logo” contest. We will publicize the contest in the October newsletter. Criteria for the contest will include a representation of each of the art forms: music, drama, dance and visual arts. Bob Lague suggested that we look to include characters that represent the arts.

K. SHIRTS & RIBBONS--There was a suggestion that we try to sell off our current inventory prior to ordering new shirts. The consensus of the group was that we should recoup some of our costs . There will be further discussion about ordering a small number of shirts with the new logo on it.

There was some discussion of possibly having some other promotional items with the new logo until we “sell-off” the existing shirts. No decision has been made. Discussion will continue.

Ribbons will be ordered for the next RA. There was some discussion of ordering some white ribbons for those who want to “make and take.” Others prefer having one ribbon that is not a “make and take”. This will be discussed further.

L. NEA FAC EVENT FOR RA 2011 --There was a suggestion at our first FAC Executive Board meeting about featuring some “artists” in some sort of event for Chicago 2011. Some conversation about inviting local high school groups occurred.

Many regional conferences support the arts in this manner by highlighting student work during meals. There might be a discussion of featuring some students during the RA.

There was no decision made. Further discussion is warranted.

M. ADJOURNMENT—8:39 PM: Meeting Time 1 hour and 3 minutes.

Submitted respectfully,
Tom McLaughlin

NOTE: Although present, Kathi Zamora was unable to take minutes as she was traveling. The meeting was recorded. Tom McLaughlin listened to the recorded meeting and will submit the minutes as Kathi Zamora was traveling during the conference call.

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