- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 5, 2014

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - The State Board of Education has approved Nebraska’s first fine arts standards in music, visual, performing and media arts.

The standards set out broad concepts for each area and include specific requirements in grade units: kindergarten through second grade, third through fifth grade, sixth through eighth grade, ninth through 12th grade. School districts will be able to adapt them to their own curriculums.

The Nebraska Arts Council provided a $46,000 grant to the state Department of Education to develop the standards, the Lincoln Journal Star said (http://bit.ly/1fHcNvb ).

The fine arts standards have not been made a part of the Rule 10, which sets out requirements for state-accredited schools. Math, reading, social studies and science standards are spelled out in Rule 10.

Donlynn Rice, administrator of curriculum, instruction and innovation for the Education Department, said adding the new fine arts standards to Rule 10 may be a department and board topic of discussion in coming months.

If they were to be added, school districts would have to either adopt them or develop standards of equal or greater rigor.

“I think technically there might be more teeth if they were in Rule 10, but I think it’s sending a strong message anyway,” Rice said. “The districts will take a serious look at them.”

___

Information from: Lincoln Journal Star, http://www.journalstar.com