The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation has once again recognized Osseo Area Schools for its outstanding commitment to music education with a Best Communities for Music Education designation. This honor acknowledges efforts by students, teachers, parents and other stakeholders who work together to ensure access to music learning.
This year, 754 school districts nationwide earned this designation. Osseo Area Schools is one of 11 districts in Minnesota to receive this honor in 2020 and the only district in the state to achieve this feat every year since 2009.
Research into music education continues to demonstrate cognitive and social skill benefits for children who make music. In 2018, Music Matters, the condensed guide from the Arts Education Partnership and co-sponsored by the Country Music Foundation and The NAMM Foundation, was released. The report offered two key findings: first, that music students do better in English, math and science than their peers without music; and second, that more music and art equals fewer dropouts and a reduced number of suspensions. Additional research shows that children who are involved in music are not only more likely to graduate high school, but to attend college as well.
Now in its 21st year, Best Communities for Music Education affirms school districts that have demonstrated exceptional efforts toward maintaining music education as part of the core curriculum. To qualify for the Best Communities designation, districts must answer detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time and more. Responses are verified with school officials and reviewed by The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas.