From the President
The 2015 Wisconsin State Music Conference theme, “Musical Minds, Broader Minds”, expresses something every music educator understands about the importance of music education. A WMEA position statement on Music Education for All Wisconsin Students expresses this idea very clearly when it states (in part) that: “In a world where high stakes testing and shrinking resources tend to narrow the focus of teaching and learning to a limited number of core subjects, the strategies employed and skills taught by professional music and arts educators that target the whole child are proven to support crucial brain development and lead to educational outcomes considered essential for college, career and citizenship readiness: increased focus and academic achievement; collaboration and school engagement; and innovation and creative thinking.”
The focus of the 2015 State Music Conference clearly targets the importance of music education in educating the whole child. It’s an idea that attempts to put the focus back on the student, and not the test score. Over 100 sessions are planned in order to help us broaden the minds of our students and of our communities. We feature another slate of excellent performances, including Wednesday evening’s opening performance by “The Big Payback”, and the annual series of State Honors concerts. Please plan to join us for a new feature at this year’s conference – a short President’s welcome session to open the conference on Thursday morning. This session is an opportunity to meet your WMEA Council members, and also serves as our awards presentation session.
Early discounted registration ends on September 21, and again includes a Friday-only option. A support letter from WSMA President Dr. R. Scott Pierce detailing the conference’s professional development opportunities was sent to all Wisconsin administrators last spring, and can be downloaded for you to use to support your attendance at the conference. Be certain your NAfME/WMEA membership is current to be eligible for the best conference rates – you can renew online at http://www.nafme.org. Conference details can be found at http://www.wmea.com/conference.
Please join me for a broader minded experience at Monona Terrace in Madison for the 2015 Wisconsin State Music Conference October 28 to 31. I look forward to sharing the days with you!