Music education keeps schools running in harmony

As I come in the doorway of Fairmont High School each morning, I walk through the $9 million Music Department. It consists of a state-of-the-art choir room, orchestra room and band room, along with an 800-seat auditorium, a recital hall, a makeup room, a box office and numerous soundproof practice rooms for the more than 600 musicians at Fairmont. I often hear our music teachers tell us how good we have it, and the truth is we do, even though a lot of us take it for granted sometimes. Other schools in our area don’t have the funding we have for music education; even our school would have lost a lot if our levy last November hadn’t passed.

It’s important to fund music education. Studies show that music students do better in school and get into less trouble than students without that exposure. At Fairmont, music is not required, but you do need one art credit to graduate and you can obtain it by taking one of the 10 music classes held throughout the day. Also, students can join one or more of the 16 after-school Music Department ensembles to have something to do, or just to keep out of trouble.

Now do I think funding for music education should take priority over funding for things like math and science? Absolutely not. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics are the future of our world, and if schools have trouble with funding, cuts should be made from music before they’re made from math and science. Being a future engineering major, I have strong feelings about that.

But I am also a music student who enjoys singing in choir every day, being a dancer in the upcoming musical, and participating in the Band Department’s Color Guard and Winter Guard. Without these activities. I wouldn’t have learned how to push myself to achieve what I want, and I would not have made the amazing friends I have now.

It makes me sad to think that there are schools out there without funding for music. For me, music was something I could bond with other people over (since I was never really good at sports), and other teens should get that opportunity to make friends and do something they love, too.

Music education is a luxury in schools since it’s expensive, and let’s face it, the chance of a student going on to be a professional musician is extremely slim. However, music is a huge part of our culture today, which is something school administrators should never forget.

I want to remind people about this since March is Music in Schools Month. Music education in schools helps students to excel and reach their full potential. It’s an important part of both my life and the lives of the other 600 music students at Fairmont.

It’s good the fall levy passed. If not, it would not only have been a devastating loss for us, but also for the community and reputation of Kettering.

Yeah, music education matters that much.