Pasadena ISD has been selected as one of the "Best Communities for Music Education in America" for the eleventh consecutive year.
“At Pasadena ISD, fine arts programs are highly valued,” said Dr. DeeAnn Powell, Superintendent of Schools. “Fine Arts opportunities help students build critical thinking skills, prepares them for higher education, and pushes their minds to an advanced level of competence while creating independent, creative, and self-directed learners.”
Pasadena ISD is one of 4% of districts across the nation receiving the prestigious award in 2017.
The Best Communities Music Education designation is awarded to districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in efforts to provide music access and education to all students.
To qualify for the Best Communities designation, Pasadena ISD answered detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program, and community music-making programs.
This award recognizes that Pasadena ISD is leading the way with music learning opportunities as outlined in the new federal education legislation, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The legislation, signed into law in December 2015, and awaiting state implementation designates music and the arts as important elements of well-rounded education for all children.
Research into music education continues to demonstrate educational/cognitive and social skill benefits for children who make music. In a series of landmark studies by scientists and researchers at Northwestern University a link was found between students in community music programs and life-long academic success, including higher high school graduation rates and college attendance. In another study from the University it was discovered that the benefits of early exposure to music education improves how the brain processes and assimilates sounds, a trait that lasts well into adulthood.
Beyond the Northwestern research, other studies have indicated that music education lays the foundation for individual excellence in group settings, creative problem solving and flexibility in work situations, as well learning how to give and receive constructive criticism to excel.
A 2015 study, “Striking A Chord” supported by the NAMM Foundation, also outlines the overwhelming desire by teachers and parents for music education opportunities for all children as part of the school curriculum.