September 15, 2020
We hope that you and the members of your families and communities are safe and well.
Professional Development Sessions
On August 21, 2020, NAST hosted a professional development session entitled, Bioaerosol Emissions in the Performing Arts – Reducing Emissions and Exposures: A Multi-Part Series. Subsequent to and aligned with this session, one of the members of the presenting team of scientists will be offering an upcoming session on September 17, 2020, 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. EDT entitled, Mask Design 101: A Bootcamp for Personal Face Coverings During COVID-19. This session will address principles of mask performance and testing; a primer on aerosols and filtration theory; design features (do’s and don’ts) that lead to better mask performance; and lessons learned after months of mask and respirator testing. Interested individuals may register for this session here.
Please note that NAST continues to offer professional development sessions regarding accreditation-related matters, as well as topic-focused sessions intended to offer to theatre administrators navigating today’s challenges factual and relevant information. Please return to the Association’s webpage that describes these sessions often as new information is added when available.
Federal Register Notice Regarding Rescission of Outdated Guidance Documents
On August 31, 2020, the Department of Education released a Notice of the Rescission of Outdated Guidance Documents. The extensive list of documents the Department of Education has determined should no longer be in effect is organized by office located within the Department of Education (i.e., OCR [Office of Civil Rights], OPE [Office of Postsecondary Education], etc.). Theatre administrators may wish to review the list and associated information and/or forward notice of these recissions to the appropriate institutional office for review and consideration.
Offered below is a list of documents of particular interest to institutions of higher education:
- OCR: Title IX Grievance Procedures, Postsecondary Education (August 4, 2004)
- OCR: Guidance on Obligation of Schools to Designate a Title IX Coordinator (April 24, 2015)
- OPE: Clarifies the Department’s expectation regarding the accreditation effective date used by accrediting agencies (June 6, 2017)
- OPE: Letter advising institutions of the recent court decision regarding the regulations dealing with the relationship between clock and credit hours, and of the steps that affected institutions must take to come into compliance with regulations (August 1, 1995) (see current NAST Standards and Guidelines [NAST Handbook 2020-21, Standards for Accreditation III.A.])
- OPE: General guidance for accrediting agencies and institutions on the treatment of campuses of Title IV-eligible institutions that have been determined to qualify for independent accreditation (February 25, 2010) (see current NAST Standards and Guidelines in general and specifically, Standards for Accreditation XIX. [NAST Handbook 2020-21])
- OPE: Guidance to Institutions and Accrediting agencies Regarding a Credit Hour as Defined in the Final Regulations Published on October 29, 2010 (March 18, 2011) (see current NAST Standards and Guidelines [NAST Handbook 2020-21, Standards for Accreditation III.A.])
- OPE: Implementation of Regulatory Requirements Related to Gainful Employment Programs (April 20, 2011)
- OPE: State Authorization under Program Integrity Regulations (Amended) (April 20, 2011)
- OPE: Implementation of Program Integrity Regulations (July 20, 2011)
- OPE: State Authorization Regulations Effective Date July 1, 2015 (June 19, 2015)
- OPE: Protecting Student Information (July 29, 2015)
- OPE: Outlines categories of terminology used by accrediting agencies to describe actions and statuses, and provides guidance to federally recognized accrediting agencies (November 16, 2016) (see current NAST Standards and Guidelines [NAST Handbook 2010-21, Bylaws, Article I., Sections 1.D. and 4.-6.])
NAST will continue to monitor these ongoing activities and provide updates as they become available and as appropriate. It is strongly recommended that institutions remain abreast of relevant legislative and federal issues, and vigilant in their efforts to develop clear and cogent understandings of federal policies and initiatives. Again, and as always, please feel free to share this information with appropriate offices within your institution.
As always, please do not hesitate to contact the National Office staff for assistance.
The National Office extends a heartfelt thank you for your continued service to NAST and the field of theatre during these unprecedented times.
Thank you and best wishes.