The Main Rotunda and East Wing of Harrisburg’s Capitol Building will feature music ensembles from five local school districts during the week of March 12 and March 23 as part of Music in our Schools Month, a national advocacy movement celebrating the importance of music education. Coordinated by the Pennsylvania Music Educators Association, performing ensembles from across Pennsylvania perform in the Capitol Building daily during the month of March.
Performances by Berks County Schools:
Monday, May 12:
Exeter Township Junior High School Chorus & String Orchestra, Main Rotunda, 12-1:00 PM
Coordinating Teacher from Exeter: Melissa Crotty
Wyomissing Area High School String Ensemble, East Wing, 12-1:00 PM
Coordinating Teacher from Wyomissing: Jessica Godek
Wednesday, March 14:
Governor Mifflin Middle School Show Choir, Main Rotunda, 12-1:00 PM
Coordinating Teacher from Governor Mifflin: Travis Williamson
Oley Valley Elementary School Band, East Wing, 12-1:00 PM
Coordinating Teacher from Oley Valley: Andrea Vinanskie
Friday, March 23:
Hamburg Area High School Band, Orchestra, and Choir, Main Rotunda & East Wing, 12-1:00 PM
Coordinating Teacher from Hamburg: Megan Kline
RMF has actively advocated for school music programs for nearly a decade. RMF strongly supports music in the schools, by the schools, and through certified music teachers employed directly by the schools to ensure equal and quality access to music instruction and ensembles for all students. So strongly are school music instruction and ensemble opportunities correlated with persistence in school, college admissions and life skills that their value in the public school curriculum cannot be denied.
In 2015-2016, RMF launched a music education data collection initiative, which collects participation numbers and music offerings in each Berks County school district. These efforts resulted in learning that there are currently over 16,000 students enrolled in music ensembles in our area schools. Because Pennsylvania does not require arts-related data collection in our schools, Berks County is the first and only county in the state that can accurately state the total number of students who participate in school music ensembles and track movement and trends among these numbers.
Over 90 years in existence, RMF is a public charity that provides financial support for music presenters in Berks County, music scholarships by audition and in response to financial need, and extensive music outreach, including programs in most of Berks County’s public and parochial schools. RMF is governed by a self-perpetuating board of volunteer trustees and is administered by two full-time employees. The Foundation depends upon the public’s support each year.