Charlottesville City Schools received the Best Communities for Music Education designation from The National Association of Music Merchants Foundation (NAMM) for outstanding achievement in providing music access and education to all students.
“This recognition is a tribute to our strong music educators, but it’s also a recognition of how much our school division values and supports the arts,” noted Fine Arts Coordinator Aaron Eichorst.
Among nearly 700 school districts nationwide, Charlottesville City Schools earned this distinction based on a variety of factors such as funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program and community programs.
Charlottesville City Schools, known for its strong commitment to the arts, offers a robust musical foundation for students beginning in elementary schools and continues through middle and high school. Beginning in fifth grade, students have the option to join band, choir, or orchestra. The middle and high school performing groups routinely earn top ratings on district and state assessments, including earning more than 11 Virginia Music Educators Association Blue Ribbon School Awards for achieving superior in band, choir, and orchestra in the same year. Programs such as the Charlottesville High School Orchestra, the Charlottesville High School Band, and the Choirs of Charlottesville High are regularly cited as exemplary, garnering top prizes in music festivals in the United States and participating in performance and learning opportunities abroad.
Leading research in music education continues to demonstrate educational/cognitive and social skill benefits for students, indicating that students who are involved in music are more likely to graduate high school and attend college, as well as develop better conflict resolution and teamwork skills. For more on this research, visit www.nammfoundation.org.
“Congratulations to our music staff — and by extension, our entire fine arts staff,” added Superintendent Dr. Rosa Atkins. “We know that these programs also depend on the commitment and support of our principals and classroom teachers along with students, families, and our community. Thanks to all of you for valuing the arts for their own sake as well as for the many ways the arts benefit our students.”