As the word began to leak about Atlanta Public Schools recent decisions to eliminate music programs and jobs for music teachers, the local news media has begun to investigate a little more deeply and ask some tough questions. Comment pages and social media sites tied to the stories were quickly filled with feedback about the decisions, which has already led to dozens of music educators losing their jobs and thousands of kids in the APS system losing their band and orchestra programs at the elementary school level. It’s clear from the number and tone of the majority of comments that parents and the general public are not supportive of the idea of scaling back exposure to music programs for the youth of the Atlanta area. We expect more and more media attention to this situation, which appears to already be finalized and not subject to any further input from parents or the public.
The Gift of Music Foundation’s Executive Director Chris Monroe was interviewed by WXIA-TV, 11 Alive for their story that aired Monday, June 1, and spoke about the importance of music education as part of the overall learning process. You can watch that segment here.
Building awareness of the importance of music education for young people is one of the primary missions of The Gift of Music Foundation. While the APS decision is unfortunate and likely unchangeable, we strive to simply make the public aware of this growing concern. So much evidence shows that music education increases overall cognitive development and aptitude for students, especially at the younger ages. More importantly, it engages kids and makes them want to learn. These are messages we strongly believe need to be heard.
Contributing to the Gift of Music Foundation will help us in our mission to be a strong advocate for music in our schools, churches and communities. Visit funding.giftofmusic.org