Advocacy

NCMEA Strategic Direction

Inform, engage, and activate the public, policymakers and educational leaders to promote and support music as an integral and core component of a comprehensive and balanced education accessible to all students.

Legislative Update: September 2017

NCMEA Lobbyist Report on summer legislative activity and the class size issue.

Position Statement on Program Enhancement Funding – August 2017

Downloadable PDF

NCMEA supports the intent language included by the General Assembly and urges legislators to fully fund Program Enhancement Teachers (including music and the arts) for all local school districts without delay. Without this funding, the class size allotment provision adopted by the General Assembly in SL 2017-9 will go into full effect during the 2018-2019 school year. This provision, without full funding for these teachers, is harmful and damaging to music education, and therefore children, in North Carolina.

The timing of the General Assembly funding these teachers is critical because the 2018 Session does not begin until mid/late-May 2018. By this time, at the end of the school year, many current educators have already been required by their school systems to state their intention of staying employed (or not) at their school. No one can be expected to commit to staying when they do not know whether their position will be funded for the next school year. Excellent music educators already are leaving for other states or choosing not to teach in North Carolina because of the timing problem with this funding decision. Therefore, NCMEA humbly requests that the General Assembly fully fund Program Enhancement Teachers during one of its Special Sessions or otherwise before its May 2018 Short Session begins.

Lawmakers across the nation have enumerated music as a fundamental component of a well-rounded child in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). NCMEA supports the ability of North Carolina school districts to offer equitable music instruction by qualified, licensed music teachers across our state. We do not support any provision that will, in effect, cause an unwritten mandate for school districts to reduce the number of music teachers in their district in order to comply with lower class sizes. No elementary child in North Carolina’s public schools should experience an education without music instruction by a qualified, licensed music teacher. We urge lawmakers to act quickly to ensure that music is included in our children’s future.

NCMEA believes that our citizens and many NC legislators support quality music programs in our schools and understand that music is a natural and important part of a child’s growth and development. Our mission is to advance music education by promoting the understanding and making of music by all. The positive effects of music instruction create life-long success in students.

To contact your legislators about this issue, please follow this link: Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee 

Legislative Update: July 2017

NCMEA Lobbyist prepared report on legislation regarding education in the Appropriations Act of 2017, SB 257.

Lobbyist Report July 10 2017

Position Statement on Licensure and Classrooms for the Elementary Music Educator

Downloadable PDF

NCMEA strongly supports the idea that music instruction should be delivered by those with a license to teach music education, not by a generalist with little or no training in the field of music education. Every effort should be made by local school districts to employ licensed music educators to teach music education at the elementary level. 

Any additional music education offerings from community arts providers (cultural organizations, community arts organizations, and teaching artists) or classroom generalists should be used to support and not in place of the teaching of a licensed music educator. While abound with many additional resources for students, these non-licensed artists and generalists educators do not have the direct understanding of a sequential, standards based music curriculum that a highly qualified and licensed music educator can offer.

In situations where music instruction is not available by a licensed music educator, every effort should be made to support the classroom generalist with quality resources and support (including professional development) until a licensed music educator is employed. NCMEA advocates for the support of such instruction by licensed retired music educators as mentors for the elementary generalist who is seeking to provide music instruction.