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Leading the Fight for Music Education

In school districts nationwide, music education programs are being reduced or eliminated altogether. At the same time, we know that music education programs in schools offer a multitude of invaluable benefits for students ranging from collaboration and communication skills, creativity, self-expression, and leadership to improved academic outcomes. Teaching music in classrooms is essential if we want to truly offer a world-class and well-rounded education to our students.

2014 NAfME Hill Day

The National Association for Music Education advocates at the federal, state, and local levels to educate elected officials and other key decision makers about the impact and importance of music education programs. Representing music educators, students, and advocates, NAfME is dedicated to ensuring the access, presence, and perseverance of quality music and arts programs that is operated by certified music educators, for all students across the nation, regardless of circumstance. Together, we are changing the national conversation about music’s role in delivering an outstanding education to all students. 

Join NAfME today to take action for music education.

What Does It Mean To Be broader minded?

What is the role of music in education our nation’s students? Today’s education culture places a high value on quanitfying academic achievement. Gauging student progress and learning is clearly important, but the true mission of education lies in shaping the students behind the scores

Studies have proven that there are positive links between engagement with music and academic achievement, but that data is only part of the bigger picture.

Music does something even more important – it shapes the way our students understand themselves and the world around them. It allows for deep engagement and nurtures assets and 21st century skills that are critical to future success, such as creativity, curiosity, determination, inter/intrapersonal communication, and motivation. 

To learn the “beyond the bubbles” arguments for music and join the broader minded movement, please visit here.

Be sure to also visit our Grassroots Advocacy Resources at the bottom for resources on the broader minded argument.

What You Can Do

Get Knowledgeable – broader mindedTM blog

For the latest developments in music education advocacy news – from Washington, D.C. and around the nation – please visit our broader mindedTM blog.  There you will find the latest in music education policy (legislative and regulatory), as well as around the clock election and campaign updates for 2016.

Take Action! – NAfME Grassroots Action Center

Grassroots action center_border

RIGHT NOW: Head to Grassroots Action Center and send a letter to Congress, asking them to fully fund Title IV, Part A

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

education reform

After years of stalled negotiations and Congressional stalemates, the U.S. House of Representatives put No Child Left Behind away for good, and passed by an overwhelming majority a new version of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

This new bill, entitled the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), is an enormous victory for music education advocates. We are truly on the verge of a new day for music education, with opportunities to use federal funding to increase access to music education for all students, especially the most vulnerable. 

Please visit our “Everything ESSA” page for the latest on this HISTORIC piece of legislation for music education. On the page you find:

  • Toolkits and implementation guides on how to navigate and understand ESSA
  • Comprehensive legislative analysis of the bill
  • NAfME’s latest work with the U.S. Department of Education in properly implementing ESSA

Collegiate Advocacy Summit 2016

Every year, the National Association for Music Education is conducts its annual Hill Day event, where hundreds of music educators, including our Collegiate members, meet with key congressional staff and members of Congress on Capitol Hill to advocate for music education.

Photo: Mark Finkenstaedt | http://www.mfpix.com/
Photo: Mark Finkenstaedt | http://www.mfpix.com/

Our Collegiate members are the future of the music education profession.  The Collegiate Advocacy Summit is designed to expose you to the world of education policy, especially as it pertains to music education, and to prepare you to enter the teaching field with tools, knowledge, and perspective that will contribute to your immediate and future success as an educator.

Stay tuned for more information and dates for the 2017 Summit!

**Recap of NAfME Hill Day and Collegiate Advocacy Summit 2016**

Decision 2016

Photo: Caratti/istock/thinkstock
Photo: Caratti/istock/thinkstock

Looking for a one stop shop for 2016 Presidential Election news? Look no further! Visit NAfME’s Election Central page for the latest on this year’s election, including upcoming primaries, current delegate counts, and debate schedules.






The Music Education Policy Roundtable

The Music Education Policy RoundtableOriginally conceived of and formalized by the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) and American String Teachers Association (ASTA), the Music Education Policy Roundtable is music education’s premier policy coalition, representing the unification of many great music education organizations under a single banner.  Together, the Roundtable works in efforts to achieve a consensus set of federal legislative recommendations, on behalf of the profession and all of those who stand to benefit from its contributions to education.

For legislative materials, formal statements, key resources, interested membership, please visit the Roundtable’s webpage.



The Committee for Education Funding (CEF)


The Committee for Education Funding (CEF) is a coalition that was founded in 1969 with the goal of achieving adequate federal financial support for our nation’s educational system. The coalition is voluntary, nonprofit and nonpartisan. CEF members include educational associations, institutions, agencies, and organizations whose interests range from preschool to postgraduate education in both public and private systems. The National Association for Music Education has been a member of CEF since 2010, and continues to maintain an active role as the ONLY organization that represents the music and arts community within the coalition.

For more information on NAfME’s membership and involvement with CEF, please visit here.

For more information on CEF, including other members, policy papers, and legislative analysis, please visit the CEF website

The Title IV, Part A Funding Coalition

Title IV Coalition LogoWithin the “Every Student Succeeds Act” (ESSA), the landmark law includes a new block grant titled Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants (SSAEG), which was created under Title IV, Part A. This grant will provide supplemental funding to help states and school districts, and provide access to “Well-Rounded” education subjects, which now includes music and the arts. 

The Title IV, Part A Coalition is an alliance of like-minded prestigious education groups that are working to urge Congress to increase funding for this program. Formed in 2016, NAfME joined the Coalition as a founding member; the Association has since participated in key meetings with members of Congress, and help organize key press events on behalf of the Coalition.

For more information on the Title IV, Part A Coalition, please visit here.

Grassroots Advocacy Resources

Contact Us!

Have questions regarding advocacy initiatives?  Contact our NAfME Advocacy and Policy team at advocacy@nafme.org

Looking to contact a specific member of our advocacy and policy staff? Find their contact information here.