NAMM Foundation Names the 'Best Communities for Music Education'

Designation recognizes community support for music education program

April 29, 2008

The NAMM Foundation today announced the results of the ninth annual “Best Communities for Music Education” survey, which includes 110 school districts across the United States. The designated programs exemplify community commitment to include music education as part of a quality education for all children. The NAMM Foundation and its music education advocacy efforts work to ensure that all children have access to quality music education programs that encourage lifelong participation in music making.

This year’s roster of musical schools represents 29 states with New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia representing the most districts.

Hundreds of teachers, school and district administrators, school board members, parents and community leaders, representing communities in all 50 states, participated in the Web-based survey. The districts were measured across a variety of program support, curricular and programmatic criteria. Furthermore, the results were measured proportionally, so that communities of different sizes were compared equally.

Participants in the survey answered detailed questions about funding, enrollment, student-teacher ratios, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program, private music lesson participation and other relevant factors in their communities’ music education programs. The responses were verified with district officials, and the sponsoring organizations reviewed the data.

“We commend these school districts for their commitment to assuring that music is part of a complete education for children,” said Mary Luehrsen, executive director, NAMM Foundation. “It takes the commitment of an entire community to assure that music is part of the core curriculum. Children engaged in music will be the innovation leaders of tomorrow, and there is no better way to build lifelong participation in music than with a solid base of music education.”

Luehrsen also noted that throughout the survey’s eight years, several districts have reported that making the “Best Communities” list has had a tangible effect on their ability to preserve music for their students. This year, recipients cited increased enrollment in music programs and more support from parents and community members as they realize the physical, mental and emotional value music education brings to students.

Research reveals strong correlations between quality music education in school and academic achievement. Students actively involved with music programs develop skills needed by the 21st century workforce, including critical thinking, creative problem solving, effective communication and teamwork.

In conducting the annual survey, the NAMM Foundation is joined by advisory organizations in the fields of music and education, including:

Americans for the Arts (icon link
League of American Orchestras (icon link
The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation (icon link
The Metropolitan Opera Guild (icon link
Music for All (icon link
Music Teachers National Association (icon link
National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts (icon link
National PTA (icon link
Yamaha Corporation of America (icon link
VH1 Save The Music Foundation (icon link

The survey was conducted by Enterprise Feedback Management company, Vovici, (icon link

About The NAMM Foundation
The NAMM Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing active participation in music making across the lifespan by supporting scientific research, philanthropic giving and public service programs from the international music products industry. For more information, visit icon link

The complete “Best Communities for Music Education in America” roster is listed alphabetically below.

School District City State Abington School District Abington Pennsylvania Academy District 20 Colorado Springs Colorado Albion Central School District Albion New York Allendale Public Schools Allendale New Jersey Ann Arbor Public Schools Ann Arbor Michigan Arlington Independent School District Arlington Texas Baltimore County Public Schools Towson Maryland Bay Shore UFSD Bay Shore New York Bay Village City School District Bay Village Ohio Beachwood City Schools Beachwood Ohio Belmont Public Schools Belmont Massachusetts Benjamin Franklin Classical charter Public School Franklin Massachusetts Berea City School District Berea Ohio Big Horn County School District #2 Lovell Wyoming Black River Public School Holland Michigan Bolivar R-1 Schools Bolivar Missouri Brevard Public Schools Viera Florida Bristol Virginia City Schools Bristol Virginia Carmel Clay Schools Carmel Indiana Carrollton/Farmers Branch ISD Carrollton Texas Central York School District York Pennsylvania Cheshire Public Schools Cheshire Connecticut Chesterfield County Public Schools Chesterfield Virginia Clarence Central Schools, NY Clarence New York Clark County School District Las Vegas Nevada Cleveland School District Cleveland Mississippi Clovis Municipal Schools Clovis New Mexico Commack Public Schools East Northport New York Community Unit School District 300 Carpentersville Illinois Coppell Independent School District Coppell Texas Cuyahoga Heights School District Cleveland Ohio David Douglas School District Portland Oregon DeKalb Schools Decatur Georgia Denton Independent School District Denton Texas Dubuque Community Schools Dubuque Iowa Ephrata Area School District Ephrata Pennsylvania Fairfax County Public Schools Falls Church Virginia Fargo Public Schools Fargo North Dakota Flemington-Raritan Regional School District Flemington New Jersey Folsom Cordova Unified School District Folsom California Fulton County Schools Atlanta Georgia Garnet Valley School District Glen Mills Pennsylvania Great Neck Union Free School District Great Neck New York Greenwich Public Schools Greenwich Connecticut Guilderland Central School District Guilderland New York Half Hollow Hills Central School District Dix Hills New York Henrico County Public Schools Richmond Virginia Hidalgo Independent School District Hidalgo Texas Hillsborough County Public Schools Tampa Florida Hilton Central Schools Hilton New York Hortonville Area School District Hortonville Wisconsin Hudson School District Hudson Wisconsin Hurst-Euless-Bedford Independent School District Bedford Texas Island Trees School District Levittown New York Jericho Union Free School District Jericho New York Joliet Public Schools District 7 Joliet Montana Jordan Utah School District Sandy Utah Klein Independent School District Klein Texas Lakeshore Public Schools Stevensville Michigan Lawrence Township School District Lawrenceville New Jersey Lebanon City Schools Lebanon Ohio LeRoy Central School Le Roy New York Letcher County Schools Whitesburg Kentucky Lewisville Independent School District Flower Mound Texas Littleton Public Schools Littleton Colorado Liverpool Central School District Liverpool New York Longwood Central School District Yaphank New York Loudoun County Public Schools Ashburn Virginia Lynn Public Schools Lynn Massachusetts Malta School District Malta Montana Metuchen School District Metuchen New Jersey Montgomery County Public Schools Christiansburg Virginia Monticello Central School District Monticello New York MSD Lawrence Township Indianapolis Indiana Nanuet Union Free School District Nanuet New York Niagara Wheatfield Central Niagara Falls New York North Allegheny School District Pittsburgh Pennsylvania North Babylon Union Free Schools North Babylon New York North Rockland Central School District North Garnerville New York Nutley School District Nutley New Jersey Olmsted Falls City Schools Olmsted Falls Ohio Oppenheim-Ephratah Central School St. Johnsville New York Ossining Union Free School District Ossining New York Paramus Public School District Paramus New Jersey Pasadena Independent School District Pasadena Texas Pequannock Township School District Pompton Plains New Jersey Perrysburg Exempted Village School District Perrysburg Ohio Plano Independent School District Plano Texas Polk County Schools Lakeland Florida Port Jefferson School District Port Jefferson New York Pulaski Community Schools Pulaski Wisconsin Putnam Valley Central School District Putnam Valley New York Quaker Valley School District Sewickley Pennsylvania Randolph Township Schools Randolph New Jersey Roanoke County public school Roanoke Virginia Rush-Henrietta CSD Henrietta New York Santa Monica-Malibu USD Santa Monica California South Amboy School District South Amboy New Jersey South Huntington Union Free School District Huntington Station New York Springville Griffith Institute and Central School Springville New York St. John School District St. John Washington State College Area School District State College Pennsylvania Sycamore Community Unit School District #427 Sycamore Illinois Syosset Central School District Syosset New York Torrington Public Schools Torrington Connecticut Township of Union School Districts Union New Jersey Valier Public Schools District #18 Valier Montana Washoe County School district Reno Nevada Webster Central School District Webster New York West Des Moines Community School District West Des Moines Iowa

Casey Kaufman


Giles Communications, LLC

Public Relations

Phone: 914.798.7126


Jodi Burack


Giles Communications, LLC

Senior Vice President

Phone: 914.798.7132


About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $17 billion music products industry. NAMM is comprised of approximately 10,300 members located in 104 countries and regions. NAMM events and members fund The NAMM Foundation's efforts to promote the pleasures and benefits of music, and advance active participation in music making across the lifespan. For more information about NAMM, please visit, call 800.767.NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.