Kevin Lee, PYLUSD Assistant Superintendent of Personnel,announced at the PYLUSD District Band Pageant on November 4 2015, and announced that the District will be restoring 4th grade music elective for PYLUSD students.
While he was on the subject he told the band members and audience about how this will be implemented. Later on Phil Mortensen gave the public more incite and history about this subject.
This isn’t a new thing though, due to in the district.“4th grade music was in place for decades in this district until about 7 years ago when state funding was woefully inadequate. As a result, 4th grade music was cut as a cost-saving measure. This year Governor Brown’s budget included new monies for education, which gave PYLUSD the opportunity to bring back a valued program!” stated by Phil Mortensen.
There are also many educational benefits that Phil talked about, and how it could affect children later on.“Starting music in 4th grade has many long-lasting benefits. First and foremost, research suggests that the earlier students are exposed to music, the more likely they are to succeed later in both music and nonmusical (linguistic, mathematical, and spatial) areas.” stated by Phil Mortensen.
Phil even talked about string band and choir.“In 4th grade, students can choose between learning a stringed instrument (violin, viola, cello or string bass) or General Music/Vocal. Students in both class learn note reading, rhythm, music history, and basic music theory. Learning these skills sets the groundwork for 5th and 6th grade where string and vocal instruction continues and band instruments (flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, trombone and percussion) are introduced.” stated by Phil Mortensen.
As he even complimented the hard work of all the marching band students of PYLUSD.“You ever wonder why 7th graders are able to march down Kraemer Blvd. and play so well or how they are able to learn two other songs so quickly for Band Pageant? It is because of the instruction they receive in elementary school.Bringing back 4th grade provides the students necessary skills at an earlier age that that they are better prepared to succeed at the middle school and high school levels.” stated by Phil Mortensen.
They also solve an equity issue as well. All upper graders at the elementary level in EVERY school receive music instruction. Whether they sing, play violin or enjoy the trumpet, each student is afforded a music experience that will have lasting effects many years down the road!