School superintendent: including music in education changes young lives

Posted on: July 8, 2016

“One of our elementary students recently stood before an audience of school district superintendents and other education leaders,” writes Francisco Escobedo, superintendent of the Chula Vista Elementary School District, on June 25 in the Star-News (Chula Vista, CA). “She and her classmates had just concluded a musical performance. She told the audience she used to be shy…. What changed in her? She began participating in her school’s music education program. It helped her find her voice, she said. It changed her life…. Our Board of Education decided last June to commit more than $15 million over three years to hire Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) teachers…. The Board’s decision was an outcome of a five-year collaboration with the San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory to rebuild arts education and pathways to music after a long absence in our District. What are the results of the arts investment to date? … Our kindergarten through sixth grade students now receive instruction in music, theater, dance, and visual or media arts. We have more than 22,000 students participating in music education alone…. Our Board’s investment in arts education has drawn national attention to San Diego County, and the impact we are having on student learning.”

Posted July 8, 2016