583 Districts and 135 Schools: Recognized as Best Communities for Music Education by NAMM Foundation and U of Kansas

The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education, June/July 2018 | Go to article overview

583 Districts and 135 Schools: Recognized as Best Communities for Music Education by NAMM Foundation and U of Kansas


CARLSBAD, Calif. - A total of 583 school districts and 135 schools across the nation have been recognized by The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation as Best Communities for Music Education (BCME). In cooperation with researchers at The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas (KU), and based on survey results, NAMM each year selects school districts that receive recognition as being among the Best Communities for Music Education and individual schools who receive the SupportMusic Merit Award (SMMA).

Now in its 19th year, the awards program recognizes the outstanding efforts of teachers, administrators, parents, students and community leaders who have made music education part of the curriculum. Designations are given to districts and schools that demonstrate an exceptionally high commitment and consistent access to music education.

This year, The NAMM Foundation and the University of Kansas are recognizing school districts in 41 states, along with individual schools in 35 states and the District of Columbia. Those honored include both schools and districts that have never been recognized before, as well as those that have received recognition multiple years in a row.

"The schools and districts we recognize this year - both new and repeat honorees - represent a diverse group of urban, rural and suburban districts and demographics," said Mary Luehrsen of The NAMM Foundation. "Along with a strong commitment to music education, there are two common traits that each program shares: consistent funding that anchors music education as part of the core curriculum and music programs that are located in communities where music education is viewed as a jewel of the school system. Parents, administrators and community members are proud of these local music programs and attend them regularly."

Research studies continue to demonstrate the physical, cognitive and social benefits of music making. Students who are involved in a schoolbased music program are more likely to graduate high school and attend college; also, only a few years of musical training early in life improves how the brain processes sound, even later in life. …

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