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Music Education Guidelines

A Description of Quality Music Programs, Kindergarten to Graduation

August 21, 200921 August 2009

Arts education

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This report provides lists of the elements that are essential for a comprehensive, multifaceted and sequential music education program in schools. Among these elements:

· “Every student shall study music in each grade in elementary school.”

· In secondary school, students should have the opportunity to choose from a variety of music programs that are available to them in every academic year.

· Students should have the opportunity to participate in a range of musical performances, both in the school and in the community.

· Students should have creative musical experiences and understand the joy of participation.

· “Music education programs shall be taught during regularly scheduled classroom hours throughout the school year at every level.”

· Programs should be sequential and skill-based, leading to clearly-defined musical skills and knowledge.

· Teachers should be properly qualified, including a university degree, teaching certificate, music education training as well as additional in-service training.

· School boards should have a music education specialist as their coordinator or consultant.

· Music should be taught for its own sake and can also be used to support other curriculum areas.

· The music taught should come from a variety of styles and periods.

The report recognizes that there are many challenges in providing quality music education programs, including budgets, staffing, equipment, space and time pressures. The report indicates that adequate amounts of all of these factors should be allotted to music education programs.

A further description of the stages of musical development, programs, facilities and resources for various age levels is also provided.

A separate document from the Coalition for Music Education in Canada (Grassroots Advocacy Guide) could help parents and others create a local coalition to improve music education.

During the 2009-10 school year, the Coalition for Music Education in Canada is planning to conduct a survey of the status of music education in Canada. The survey will be developed and analyzed by Hill Strategies Research.

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