Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) has earned national recognition as one of the Best Communities for Music Education as designated by the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation. VBCPS is one of 583 school districts in 41 states and one of 14 school divisions in Virginia to earn the honor this year. This is the seventh year VBCPS has earned the recognition.
Now in its 19th year, the NAMM Foundation’s 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.”
According to VBCPS Fine Arts Coordinator John Brewington, to qualify for the Best Communities designation VBCPS answered detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program and community music-making programs. Responses were verified with school officials and reviewed by The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas.
“Along with a strong commitment to music education, there are two common traits that each program shares,” said Mary Luehrsen, executive director of the NAMM Foundation, in the announcement of the honorees, “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.”
To view a complete list of school districts designated as 2018 Best Communities for Music Education, visit the NAMM Foundation website.