Board of Education Honored for Supporting Music Education
The Lawrence Board of Education (BOE) received a high note of praise as it learned the Board of Directors of the New Jersey Music Educators Association (NJMEA) voted to award the Lawrence Township School District their 2020 Outstanding School Board Award. The award is in recognition of the BOE’s support of music education. The congratulatory letter stated, “NJMEA takes great pride in recognizing individuals that have made significant contributions to music education both within the confines of their school district and beyond. The strength of the application presented by the music teachers of your district was compelling.” District parents also contributed to the application.
NJMEA will present the award on February 21, 2020 at the General Session of the NJMEA’s State Professional Development Conference in Atlantic City.
“We are thrilled that our Board of Education is receiving this recognition,” related Dr. Ross Kasun, superintendent. “Even in tough budgetary times, our Board acknowledges the benefits of music, in its many forms, for our students and finds a way to fund our comprehensive programs.”
The BOE supports a comprehensive music education program in grades Pre-K through 12. Starting in 4th grade, students can begin a band/orchestra instrument and join the chorus. Select music ensembles begin in 5th grade and are comprised of chamber strings, jazz band, and pitch black (select chorus). Marching band and color guard are open to all high school students. These groups recently received new uniforms and started participating, and doing well, in competitions. Music-related technology is infused into all grade levels.
BOE members support district music programs by attending a multitude of performances. They budget funds for new instruments, sheet music and supplies that are evenly distributed throughout the seven schools. Additionally, the BOE approves out-of-district professional development for music teachers. National Association for Music Education memberships are funded for all music teachers who sponsor music students for regional and all state ensembles.
The Lawrence Township School District has earned the title of “Best Community for Music Education” through the NAMM Foundation for 11 years (2004, 2008-2010, 2013-2019).