Posted 5/23/24

The CMA Foundation has released the results of a groundbreaking case study looking at the state of arts and music education in Tennessee school districts.

“Face the Music: A Case Study for Expanding Music and Arts Education in Schools” shines a light on how state and local education agencies and decision makers can make better and more insightful investments in programs, promising practices, and recommendations for sustainable programming that reaches all students.

Over the last few years, the CMA Foundation has partnered with the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation, utilizing the foundation’s Music and Arts Education District Support Services to conduct an assessment of the “State of the Arts” in Tennessee, including nearly 1,200 educators from 589 schools in 23 school districts.

The key results from the assessment reflect what is shown in other research about arts and music education, the programs are critical to schools because they help improve academic achievement in math and reading, increase student participation and classroom engagement, improve attendance, and enhance social and emotional development.

Three in four school districts responding show a significant increase in the percentage of students proficient in reading, with nearly half of students enrolled in music and arts programs demonstrating proficiency. Seven in 10 districts report higher percentages of students excelling in math among those enrolled in music and arts education.

Local School Systems involved in the study include…Giles County School System, Lincoln County Schools, and Maury County Public Schools.