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A world without Music

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Andrew S.
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  1. Introduction.
    1. Ramsay High School.
    2. An isolated experience.
  2. Music education is vital - especially for students struggling in school.
    1. Federal government and making music education a top priority.
    2. Music education and skills necessary to communicate well with others.
    3. An extracurricular outlet.
    4. Helping students improve intellectually.
  3. The lack of facilities like computers and better libraries.
  4. Disproportional distribution of wealth in the U S.
  5. VH1's Save the Music Foundation.
    1. Suggestions on how to raise money.
    2. How to become an advocate for music education.
    3. Music education should be elevated to the status of a core subject.
  6. Conclusion.

I walked nervously down a dark, damp, crowded corridor. Condensation, like a light but steady rainfall, dripped from the poorly maintained air conditioning system high above in the ill lit hall way. Unfamiliar faces gazed in my direction with zombie-like indifference as I brushed shoulders, making my way slowly to the Ramsay High School gymnasium. By the time I finally reached the gym, my sense of self assuredness was shaken, and my worldview, although I was unaware of it at the time, was quickly making perhaps not a U-turn, but at the very least a sharp right.

Ramsay High School was like nothing I had ever seen before. The hallways were dark and crowded, as were the classrooms. The library was small and insufficient to say the least. The computer lab had a total of ten outdated, prehistoric-looking computers, the type one expects to find at yard sales for twenty dollars. This bank of computers represented the school's entire stock. Later that night, as I was warming up with the rest of my basketball team, preparing to face off against the Ramsay Rams, I noticed something was missing from the pregame ritual: music. Ramsay did not have a pep band.

[...] Frances Rauscher outlined a study in which students that were given a music education were compared to students who took the same classes from the same teachers without a musical education. Dr. Rauscher found that the students who were given keyboard lessons had spatial-temporal IQ's that were on average thirty five percent greater than the children who received no music training Furthermore, after eight months the students were again tested. Children receiving music education showed an improvement in test scores of forty six percent, while students not receiving music education improved by only six percent As Dr. [...]


[...] Glenn Schellenberg, PhD, says that there is a ?dose-response? correlation to music and intelligence: the longer a person takes lessons, the greater growth in I.Q. scores (Munsey). These studies have found that a musical education early in life can lead to a better development of cognitive abilities that help a student think critically, problem solve, and develop creative ideas. In whole the study found childhood music education to be a ?significant predictor of a higher IQ in young adulthood and a history of better high school grades? and found positive association between music lessons and higher school grades and higher scores on achievement testing in mathematics, spelling and reading? (Munsey). [...]


[...] I thought about my place as an intern at the Exit/In, a prominent music venue in downtown Nashville, and about all the artists and tour managers I come in contact with on a near daily basis. Many of these artists are quite successful, and it is not unfeasible that they would be interested in giving money to help support a foundation based in their career. Because of its simplicity and effectiveness this plan stuck out as possibly my best shot at making a difference for the Save the Music Foundation. [...]

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