From Capitol Hill to Tucson: Advocacy in Action

In May of 2017, we participated in the Annual NAMM Fly-In. During this event, music education supporters unite on Capitol Hill to advocate and discuss policy issues with elected officials. The Fly-In also includes an intensive training with policy experts to learn about the policies and priorities of the current administration.

One of the elected officials we met with was Rep. Raul Grijalva of Arizona. He is both a music education supporter and father to Adelita S. Grijalva, who serves on the school board for Tucson Unified School District in Arizona (TUSD). We spoke about our continued work in the state of Arizona, having granted to 21 schools there since 2000.

music education advocacy

Meeting with Rep. Grijalva at NAMM Fly-In 2017

 

Conversations like those led to a special event in August 2017, when STM had the pleasure of delivering our Keys+Kids piano grant to the students of Tucson Magnet High School. With the support of the NAMM Foundation, students received 1 Casio Grand Celviano piano as well as 3 WK-7600 Workstations. Notable attendees included Rep. Grijalva, himself, who witnessed the high school students unveil their new instruments.

From Capitol Hill to Tucson Advocacy in Action

Above: Tucson Magnet HS students unveil new piano

 

Music teacher, Khris Dodge (pictured above in burgundy), was overjoyed with the piano grant, and felt it would be a catalyst to Tucson Magnet’s ever-growing music program:

 

For the first time in more than a decade, our orchestra program has a viable piano to use in their room, which has allowed the orchestra to do program pieces this semester for piano and string orchestra as well as give the students an instrument to use with small ensemble rehearsals and performances… this is just the beginning of many more years of music to come.

 

Stories like Tucson Magnet High School inspire us to continue our advocacy work at the federal, state, and local levels. We’re committed to making sure music in each community is supported from the top-down: including District Arts Coordinators and Principals, but also Superintendents and Policymakers who play an important role in budgeting for music education in schools. From Capitol Hill to Tucson, our mission remains the same: to help kids, schools, and communities realize their full potential through the power of making music.

NAMM Fly-In Recap

Delivery Event Recap

 

 

About NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants): We envision a world in which the joy of making music is a precious element of daily living for everyone; a world in which every child has a deep desire to learn music and a recognized right to be taught; and in which every adult is a passionate champion and defender of that right. Founded in 1901, NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) has a mission to strengthen the music products industry and promote the pleasures and benefits of making music.
 
About the NAMM Advocacy Fly-In in Washington, D.C.: Each May, a group of NAMM members and special guests gather in Washington, D.C. to serve as advocates for the right of every child to learn and grow with music by visiting with their elected representatives on Capitol Hill. Beyond this annual event, the SupportMusic Coalition on Coalitions meet at NAMM Shows, empowering members to take action by forming their own coalitions to advocate for music education and related policy issues. “It is a rewarding honor to be a part of the diverse group of NAMM members who come together with a common purpose, to ensure that our education system continues to provide the opportunity to learn music. In Washington, we are personally educating our country’s leaders on the power of music and helping to protect student’s rights to have music as part of their curriculum, today and into the future.”- Crystal Morris, President of Gator Cases
 
Declaration on Equity in Music for City Students: We call for every student in every city to have access to a robust and active music life. This call is animated by the values of dignity and inclusion. An active music life affirms the dignity of individuals and communities. We decry the inequities that deny some city students access to an active music life. City students’ access to an active music life requires the ongoing development of supportive music ecosystems. We call for all city students to have access to in-school music education taught by certified music educators. We call for strategic partnerships with local organizations to expand and enrich cities’ music ecosystems. We call for changes in the development, training, and support of music educators and teaching artists.