Arlington Public Schools has been honored with the NAMM Foundation’s Best Communities for Music Education designation for its outstanding commitment to music education. This is the fifth consecutive year that APS has earned this recognition. The Best Communities for Music Education designation is awarded to districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in their efforts to provide access to music and education for all students.
To qualify for Better Communities designation, APS answered detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, participation in music classes, instructional time, facilities, music program support. Responses were verified with school officials and reviewed by The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas. This year applicants were specifically asked to reflect on strategies and technologies that were being used to engage students due to the challenging circumstances from the pandemic.
This award recognizes that APS is leading the way with learning opportunities as outlined in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The legislation guides implementation in the states and supersedes the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), which was often criticized for an overemphasis on testing, leaving behind issues like music. ESSA recommends music and the arts as important elements of a well-rounded education for all children.
Research on music education continues to demonstrate educational / cognitive and social skills benefits for children who make music. In a series of landmark studies by scientists and researchers at Northwestern University, a link was found between students in community music programs and lifetime academic success, including higher rates of high school graduation and high school attendance. college. In another University study, the benefits of early exposure to music education were found to improve the way the brain processes and assimilates sounds, a trait that lasts into adulthood.
About the NAMM Foundation
The NAMM Foundation is a nonprofit organization supported in part by the National Association of Music Merchants and its approximately 10,300 members worldwide. The foundation promotes active participation in music creation throughout life by supporting scientific research, philanthropic donations, and public service programs. For more information about the NAMM Foundation, visit www.nammfoundation.org.