Music Education Research

September 13, 2009

No Child Left Behind and Music Education

Filed under: Policy — Rick Dammers @ 11:08 am

Gerrity, K. W. (2009). No Child Left Behind: Determining the impact of policy on music education in Ohio. Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education, (179), 79-93.

Kevin Gerrity, in his survey of principals of Ohio public schools (n=179), found that these principals had a generally favorable attitude toward music education. However, they ranked music as less important than the subjects measured in No Child Left Behind (math, reading, social studies, science, and writing).  Combining factors including staffing, course offerings, and instructional time, Gerrity found that 43% of Ohio schools had weakened since the enactment of NCLB, while 40% held steady, and 17% had strengthened. The reduction of instructional time, primarily through the inclusion of non-music academic instruction within music classes, seemed to be the primary weakening factor.

While this study cannot attribute causality, it does present some interesting correlations that strengthen anecdotal evidence that NCLB has not been music friendly. Looking forward to upcoming discussions of merit pay for teachers, the music education community needs to be proactive in suggesting how effective music instruction be measured.  Being left out of the measurements again could further marginalize music within the school curriculum.



  1. […] No Child Left Behind: Determining the impact of policy on music education in Ohio:  Dr. Rick Dammers summarizes a research article by Kevin Gerrity that looks into the impact of music education policy in the schools. […]

    Pingback by MusTech.Net: Music Education, Music Technology, & Education! » The Monday Morning Music Mix -Education News From All Over ~9-14-09 — September 14, 2009 @ 12:55 am

  2. Hi Rick-
    Just discovered your blog thru an e-mail from Scott Lipscomb. Looks great! Thought you might send a shout out about CRIME being (finally) available online, and for a little while, the latest 5 issues are free. Forgive me if you’ve already covered this on your blog. Haven’t read the previous posts yet. Here’s the link:

    Hope to see you at ATMI.

    Jon Harnum
    Northwestern U. PhD student

    Comment by Jonathan Harnum — October 19, 2009 @ 8:34 am

  3. the public schools on our district can really give some good education to young kids. they have high standards `::

    Comment by PNP Transistor — December 3, 2010 @ 8:48 am

  4. –; I am really thankful to this topic because it really gives great information -*,

    Comment by Mirrored Furniture — January 25, 2011 @ 1:33 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: