Ephrata music community again recognized among best in United States

By on June 2, 2016
The Best Communities for Music Education

Ephrata Area School District has been named among the 2016 Best Communities for Music Education in the United States, according to the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation. Of the 13,515 school districts in the United States, 476 districts received this distinction. The district also received this recognition in 2005, 2008, 2010, 2014, and 2015.

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. Ephrata Area School District received a score above the 80th percentile via an online survey. Survey participants answered detailed questions about the music program, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, funding, graduation requirements, and other relevant factors in school district music education programs.

“It’s a rewarding achievement to be named a Best Community for Music Education again in 2016 because it recognizes a collective effort among students and staff. Everyone involved in our music program, at every level district-wide, aspires to provide quality music instruction and demonstrates consistent measures of success through music,” said James Kimmel, district related arts department supervisor.

Additionally, this award recognizes that the district is leading the way with learning opportunities as outlined in the new federal education legislation, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The legislation, signed into law in December 2015, replaces the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), which was often criticized for an overemphasis on testing while leaving behind subjects such as music. ESSA acknowledges music and the arts as important elements of well-rounded education for all children.

Now in its 17th year, the NAMM Foundation recognizes outstanding efforts by teachers, administrators, parents, students, and community leaders who work together to ensure access to music learning for all students as part of the school curriculum.

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