Bay is a Best Music Education Community 2019
Standards for inclusion on the prestigious Best Communities for Music Education list have increased consistently over the last 17 years, but the Bay Village City School District is once again so honored for its exemplary music program. First recognized with the designation in 2003, and each year since, Bay Village is among just 623 districts nationwide, and 38 Ohio districts, identified for the honor by the NAMM Foundation in 2019.
The designation takes on added significance as research into music education continues to demonstrate educational/cognitive and social skill benefits for children who make music. In a series of landmark studies by scientists and researchers at Northwestern University, a link was found between students in community music programs and life-long academic success, including higher high school graduation rates and college attendance. In another study from the University, it was discovered that the benefits of early exposure to music education improves how the brain processes and assimilates sounds, a trait that lasts well into adulthood. Beyond the Northwestern research, other studies have indicated that music education lays the foundation for individual excellence in group settings, creative problem solving and flexibility in work situations, as well learning how to give and receive constructive criticism to excel.
Districts who wish to be evaluated and considered for the Best Music Education Communities designation must complete a detailed survey responding to questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program, certification of instructors and other relevant factors in their music education programs. Examples of how music teachers collaborate on lessons and activities with regular classroom teachers musts be provided. Responses are verified with school officials and reviewed by The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas.
"We are grateful to our staff, families and students for countless hours, unparalleled dedication and celebration of our students’ unique talents," said Jodie Hausmann, superintendent of the Bay Village Schools. "Recognition of our schools’ music program is appreciated and well-deserved!"
Music instructors at the Bay Village City School District are Darren Allen (Bay High instrumental), Mark Awad (Bay Middle instrumental), Dr. E. James Kotora (Normandy music), Elaine Dwyer (Westerly music), Carrie Engelbrecht (Westerly music), Devon Gess (Bay High vocal), Heidi Herczeg (Bay Middle vocal), Jeffrey Schimelpfenig (Westerly strings), and Carrie Singler (Bay High instrumental).
Bay Village Schools music educators. Left-to-right: front row, seated: Elaine Dwyer (Westerly, vocal), Mark Awad (Bay Middle School, instrumental), Heidi Herczeg (Bay Middle School, vocal). Back row: Darren Allen (Bay High instrumental), Carrie Singler (Bay High, instrumental), Jeffrey Schimelpfenig (Westerly, strings), James Kotora (Normandy, general music), Carrie Engelbrecht (Westerly, general music), and Devon Gess (Bay High, vocal).