Western Pennsylvania School Districts Named as Best Communities for Music Education

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation recognizes 476 school districts as among the Best Communities for Music Education. In its 17th year, the program singles out BCME_16Logodistricts for outstanding efforts by teachers, administrators, parents, students and community leaders to make music education accessible to all students.

In addition to the 476 districts receiving Best Communities for Music Education recognition, 118 individual schools across the nation are being awarded the Support Music Merit Award (SMMA), which recognizes support for school-based music education programs.

“The schools and districts that the NAMM Foundation honors this year with this award demonstrate a commitment to supporting music education and assuring opportunities for music learning in the curriculum for all students,” said Mary Luehrsen of the NAMM Foundation. “We are moving from a time when curricula were narrowed due to pressure from testing and test-prep remediation to a broader view of what is important for all children. That includes access to a well-rounded education – and an opportunity to learn and grow with music and the arts. The schools and districts we recognize serve as models for other educators looking to develop standards-based music education programs. ”


The BCME program evaluates schools and districts based on funding, staffing of highly qualified teachers, commitment to standards, and access to music instruction. Researchers at the Center for Public Partnerships & Research at the University of Kansas led the data review.

In past years a BCME designation raised local awareness of quality music programs from coast to coast. Earning the designation assists communities in securing funds for music programs threatened by budget cuts, and acts as a source of community pride. News of past winners national recognition often leads to local media coverage, community recognition and even billboards trumpeting the local school music programs.

Western Pennsylvania Best Communities for Music Education

Bethel Park School District
Central Valley School District
Clairton City School District
Fox Chapel Area School District
Freeport Area School District
Kiski Area School District
McKeesport Area School District
Moon Area School District
Mt. Lebanon School District
North Allegheny School District
North Hills School District
Quaker Valley School District
Upper St. Clair School District

Western Pennsylvania SupportMusic Merit Schools

East Allegheny Junior/Senior High School – North Versailles, PA
Highland Middle School – Beaver Falls, PA
Laurel Highlands High School – Uniontown, PA
Logan Elementary School – North Versailles, PA

A complete list of districts and schools receiving Best Community and SupportMusic designations from the NAMM Foundation in 2016 can be found at: http://www.nammfoundation.org/what-we-do/best-communities-music-education.

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About NAMM Foundation
The NAMM Foundation is a non-profit supported in part by the National Association of Music Merchants and its 9200 members around the world. The NAMM Foundation works to advance active participation in music making across the lifespan by supporting scientific research, philanthropic giving and public service programs. For more information about the NAMM Foundation, please visit www.nammfoundation.orgFacebookTwitter and YouTube.