At a time when the news is often about what our schools our lacking, I wanted to share some good news happening every day in San Francisco public schools – the elementary instrumental music program that serves more than 5,000 4th and 5th graders in SFUSD.
I was delighted and proud last weekend to attend the annual SFUSD citywide 4th/5th grade music concert at Lincoln High School. This is the second year my daughter performed as a budding flute player.
Over 800 musicians were selected to perform from among all SFUSD elementary schools. First year trumpets, clarinets and flutists performed in groups, followed by first year violas. Deputy Superintendent Richard Carranza was in attendance, and wore his own beautiful black velvet hat to play a mariachi tune with the first year violins! The guy has talent!
The second year violins played together followed by the wind instrument band. It brought tears to my eyes to see what these dedicated music teachers can accomplish with these eager young students in less than one hour each week. Several long-time retiring music teachers (one had 41 years in SFUSD!) were honored.
My own daughter has been inspired through this program to continue flute next year in middle school. Her older brother is an enthusiastic viola player in orchestra and electric guitar in jazz band. Several of my fellow parents (all of us amatour musicians ourselves) noted that we didn’t have access to this type of program when we were growing up.
Here’s one thing that is definitely RIGHT about SFUSD and our public schools!