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 527 school districts in the nation and one 15 school divisions in Virginia to earn the BCME distinction this year.
According to the NAMM Foundation, “the Best Communities for Music Education designation is awarded to districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in efforts to provide music access and education to all students.” VBCPS has earned the recognition every year since 2012.
VBCPS provides a comprehensive music education program to students in grades K-12, offering music instruction to more than 40,000 students annually. All elementary classrooms have Orff instruments available and students receive recorder instruction beginning in fourth grade. The division also offers beginning strings instruction as early as third grade, chorus by fifth grade and band beginning in sixth grade. Steel drum ensembles and music theatre are additional opportunities at select schools.
Each year, VBCPS students earn superior and excellent ratings in band, chorus and orchestra at state assessment performances. The Virginia Music Educators Association recognized seven VBCPS schools as Blue Ribbon winners and five high school bands as honor bands this year.
The school division’s music education program benefits from various community partnerships with various local venues, festivals and organizations such the Sandler Center for the Peforming Arts, Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Virginia Arts Festival, Tidewater Winds and Beach Events. Educational programs, performance opportunities, concerts, clinics and internships are among the support provided to students and staff.
“Music education is a vital part of a VBCPS student’s education” said John H. Brewington, VBCPS fine arts coordinator. “This designation is a testament to the quality and dedication of our music staff and the support of our school district administrators, School Board members and our community partners. All have long demonstrated their commitment to music education and the performing arts. We are truly grateful to be recognized by the NAMM Foundation as a Best Community for Music Education.”
To view the complete list of school districts designated as 2017 Best Communities for Music Education, visit the NAMM Foundation website.