Pa. lawmaker turns a tin ear to music educators seeking more support

    Music educators are calling on Pennsylvania legislators to show more support for arts education.

    The Central Bucks East High School Wind Ensemble played “America the Beautiful” during a Tuesday hearing.

    The head of the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association said music transcends differences.

    But on questions of funding, it’s not so clear if everyone’s singing the same tune.

    Republican Sen. John Eichelberger said it’s up to educators themselves to be their own best advocates.

    “We’ve gotten through a period with our past governor that poured in hundreds of millions of additional dollars into public education with really very little results and we’re looking now at school choice,” he said. “We’re looking at a lot of options for kids so that they can excel and find programs that are best for them.”

    The Music Educators Association wants to see Pennsylvania’s high schools make arts education a graduation requirement, as so many other states do.

    It’s also asking that music teachers be evaluated based not on standardized test scores, but on things such as district-created tests, student attendance and graduation rates.

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