District 203’s music program may soon require students to enroll in classes to participate in extracurricular ensembles, according to plans presented by district administrators at the December 19 school board meeting. . The plan is pending board approval.
“After reviewing our vision for music, barriers to growth, and best practices in the field of performance music, we have decided it is time to strengthen our high school music program,” said the Board.
Managers surveyed eight benchmark districts in Illinois and two districts outside of Illinois.
“Research has proven that [District] 203’s high school music program is comparable to other school districts in many ways, but it also proved to differ in some key areas,” said Nicholas Jansen, arts department education coordinator at Naperville North. said at the council. “Our benchmark school district requires students to be enrolled in a performance music course in the curriculum while participating in a performance music extracurricular ensemble.”
The proposed changes will be implemented over the next two years.According to the plan, all students must meet simultaneous enrollment Requirements by being assigned to the Lunchtime Music Techniques course for the 2023-24 academic year. Beginning in the 2024-25 school year, freshmen, sophomores and juniors must be enrolled in regular music classes, while seniors are required to attend lunchtime music technique classes only.
“As plans progress, students will apply to a full performance music course,” Jansen said. “This will allow students to easily meet the concurrent enrollment requirement now, while still providing them with ample time to plan for meeting the concurrent enrollment requirement in the future.”
Other proposed changes include retaining two directors for each high school choir, orchestra and band.
“District 203 has had massive staff turnover and instability over the years and our model has resulted in the loss of some of the best music educators in the area to the local district. I did,” said Holland. “Programmatic stuffing in our music program needs to consider the longevity of the program to maintain staffing consistency.”