SB 17-107 (Merrifield/McLachlan) Reward Access to Arts Education in Public Schools

Originally Posted: February 3, 2017
Last Updated: April 28, 2017


The bill creates an additional performance indicator that measures the degree to which a public school or school district provides access to courses or educational programs in dance, drama and theater, music, and visual arts and directs the State Board of Education to adopt rules by which additional credit could be earned toward performance ratings based on the arts performance indicator. The bill repeals the authority to remove a school district’s or the institute’s accreditation based on performance under a priority improvement or turnaround plan.


The Colorado Children’s Campaign opposes this bill. We believe in the importance of arts in public schools. However, in our position on the Accountability Work Group that has been working to determine an additional indicator to incorporate in accountability frameworks, we have strongly supported other indicators, such as chronic absenteeism. Absenteeism is a powerful early predictor of student performance and is a valid and reliable measure that can also serve as a proxy for a school’s climate.

Current Status

The bill died on 2nd reading on the Senate floor.

Previous Statuses

April 14, 2017

Passed the Senate Appropriations Committee as amended on a 4-3 vote and now heads to the Senate floor for debate.

February 17, 2017

Passed the Senate State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee unanimously and how heads to the House Appropriations Committee.

February 3, 2017

Introduced In Senate – Assigned to State, Veterans, & Military Affairs.