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Bill Would Add Arts & Music to Public School Curriculum


Bills in the state legislature would codify arts and music education into the public school curriculum.

Under the legislation sponsored by State Senator Rachel May and Assemblymember Kimberly Jean-Pierre, music and arts education would be recognized as an essential element to a balanced education and become a required course of study for students in 1st through 8th grades as well as into high school.

Senator Rachel May said, “Arts and music education are crucial for students’ academic success, as well as their creative and imaginative development. By allowing students to grow their creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills, we can prepare them for success in all aspects of their lives. I hope that by ensuring access to arts and music education, New York’s public school students will be equipped with the tools they need to thrive inside and outside the classroom.”

The legislation cites the benefits arts and music education have on students and seeks to combat the tendencies of budget cuts to target arts and music programs first. By requiring these subjects to be in the curriculum, May and Jean-Pierre hope to safeguard against them being defunded while having them added back into districts that have already cut them.

Assemblymember Kimberly Jean-Pierre said, “It is extremely evident that arts and music education help students with future academic success. It boosts creativity, teaches problem-solving, and increases student engagement. New York State needs to take action to codify arts and music education in our schools by passing our legislation. We need to ensure that students across the state enjoy the benefits of this education. I look forward to working with colleagues in the legislature to ensure the bills’ passage and make sure arts and music education is in our schools for years to come.

Both the Senate and Assembly versions of the bill are currently in committee

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