In the news today, we see all too often stories of music programs being slashed, budgets being dissected, and even entire schools being shuttered. Learning this, many people shrug and conclude that there’s nothing to be done about it. They may feel helpless, and hopeless. They may assume that people more knowledgable than they are are making the right decisions on their behalf, or that the powers that be have stacked the deck against them, or that it’s too late and there’s too much momentum to change anything now.Read More
Today’s post is by sophomore Mackenzie Keith at Whitewater High School in Fayetteville, Georgia. Upon hearing about proposed fine arts budget cuts, she grabbed her smartphone and a few friends, and got right to work. To anyone who thinks that something similar is happening to your programs, speak up and speak out! There’s nothing more powerful than the students’ opinion.Read More
Today’s guest post is by Maggie Fischer, founder and president of the Music Advocates of Carroll County in Maryland. They are a grassroots organization that is dedicated to supporting music education in our schools. In this post, find out how to create an open dialog with the members of your Board of Education.Read More
January is a time for clean slates and fresh beginnings. Marching season is over, the holidays are past, and bowl games are behind us. This year, my first resolution is to get the Christmas tree put away before St. Patrick’s Day. (Actually not kidding. Sigh.) After that, though, what comes next?
“Resolution” is really just a fancy way of announcing that you’re planning to commit to an intention to better yourself or the world around you. In other words, to “set a goal.”Read More
Today’s guest post comes to us from Huffington Post contributor Nicholas Ferroni.
…All the founders, even Washington who was not as formally educated as the others, had love, respect and passion for philosophy, art and music, three subjects that are the basis for all humanities courses.Read More
You’ve seen the headlines about the economy and “failing” schools. We believe parents need to step up to get involved long before your local school board begins cutting costs…whether it’s with a scalpel, or with something worse! Think it can’t happen to you? Well, come on in and sit a spell…maybe it’s not too late for your school music program after all.Read More
Even though no budget cuts had been proposed in this area, these music educators in suburban Pittsburgh (PA) saw the writing on the wall of music education nationwide. Instead of waiting to react, they proactively took out a billboard to promote music in our schools. Could this work in your area? Read on to find out the how-to of “preventative maintenance” for school music before cuts are threatened in your area.Read More
Recently I took the opportunity to thank my local school board and administration for supporting the arts at my daughter’s school. I sent an advance copy to the teachers I mentioned by name, then sent copies to the administration (superintendent, assistant superintendents, principal & assistant principal) and the entire school board. I’ve included a draft of my letter below.??Read More
As parents, we see the word advocacy all the time. But sometimes it is difficult to know what a parent can do. Perhaps more importantly, it’s tough to know what we should do! How do we know when it’s time to advocate for school music programs?
Photo by flickr user Hazzat
The easiest answer is . . . It is ALWAYS time to advocate for our school music programs. Why? Because we live in a culture that places the arts on the fringe. We know that when it’s time for budget cuts, the arts are almost universally identified as a place for potential reductions. We also know that if we are proactive in our support for the arts, we can dramatically decrease the likelihood that music will be targeted for cuts. We can stand prepared to speak against such cuts at the earliest stages of the discussion, rather than when it is almost too late.
Being proactive as an advocate means . . .Read More