ESSA to boost music education nationwide

Music education will receive a boost due to the rewrite of a major federal education law.

Signed into law by President Obama earlier in December, the Every Student Succeeds Act lists music as a portion of a well-rounded education and gives it more support than previous policies when it comes to access and funding.

The law also means federal grant funding is opened for states and local school districts to support music education programs and further train music teachers.

The growing emphasis on music education is great news in places like Nashville where the Music Makes Us program recently hit a record high of students enrolled in music education programs. Music Makes Us is a public-private partnership that has received support from the Country Music Association, including $10 million for new instruments.

According to a report by Music Makes Us, more than 48,700 Metro Nashville public school students take part in music education classes. The report also says the program has increased access to music education for students across every subgroup, and shares that students enrolled in music education have shown better attitudes toward school and increased academic results over time.

It’s no secret that students who study music excel in other areas as well. Unfortunately the direct effect of music is not always noted. Hopefully the updated ESSA will mean more access for all students to music education, and a stronger learning base as a result.

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