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Music Education Programs

            As I progressed through my high school years, I started to notice the lack of attention the music program at my high school was getting. I remember going to contests all over Texas and observing the best high school band programs in the country. A common denominator for almost every great program is their utilization of props. These marching contests were part of University Interscholastic League (UIL) competition. The state of Texas is divided into 7 areas, which are then divided into 28 prospective regions, and only a certain amount of bands are allowed to advance once they receive the highest rating possible on a scale of 1-5, 1 being the highest. I noticed how the bands that advanced had so much more staff than my high school, so I decided to ask my band director why that was and he simply said it was because of money that we didn't have due to budget cuts. These schools weren't affected by budget cuts because they were part of wealthier neighborhoods that actually had support from their parents and school board. Not only did they have more props, but they sounded exceptionally better, due to the fact that they had money to spend on more staff. They had enough to have one technical assistant per instrument section, as opposed to other programs where they only had enough for one technical assistant in total.
             Music programs across Houston are closing due to a lack of support from the school board and the community. The sad truth is that a program of any specialty needs money in order to flourish and be great, whether that money goes for instruments, staff, or even a facility. How can a school gain the needed support for their programs to not perish? I had the chance to interview a student at the University of Houston, that is studying for a bachelor's in nursing. She mentioned that there is a new program at UH, since there's not a nursing program, that will allow her to transfer into the medical school in UT after three years here.

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