Saturday, May 8, 2010

Music advocacy from the heart of my daughter.

May 5, 2010

Honorable Dennis Utter
P.O. Box 94604 State Capitol
Lincoln, NE 68509

Senator Utter,

I am writing you to address my feelings on the issue of taking the music programs out of schools. I know that this in not an issue in our great state of Nebraska at the moment, but I fear that one day it may be. This letter is a plea for prevention.

Many states have mismanaged their money and are now cutting music programs from the schools. I understand that cutting math, science and reading classes are obviously out of the question. The argument is that some states feel they have to cut these programs in order to save money. However, there must be other ways in which that is possible. Students need music. There are many studies and statistics that I could mention in this letter about how music makes a child more intelligent, but I would like to approach it from a more personal point of view.

Music has been a part of my life since I was born. I have a musically gifted family. I play the flute, piano, and sing. My two brothers are also very talented musicians. One plays the bass guitar while the other one drums, and they are both marvelous singers. My mother was the inspiration to our musical abilities. She went to college to earn a degree in music education and has now been teaching music for over 20 years. She stayed at home with us when we were young and taught my brothers and I everything we know about music.

When my brothers and I were old enough to start school, my parents thought it would be best to send us to a small, parochial school. This meant that we would not be attending any of the schools in which my mother taught. My brothers and I were active in music programs in our elementary years and continued in high school. The music programs at our schools helped us become who we are today.

As stated earlier, my mother is an elementary school music teacher. She teaches in three small schools, Ayr, Juniata, and Wallace #16, in the Adams Central School District. She keeps in contact with music teachers nationwide through an e-mail list of K-8 music teachers. Many of those teachers have become her friends. It is very disheartening to her when she finds out that many of these teachers are loosing their jobs because of pulling music out of schools. Will it really be saving the government money by getting rid of these jobs and then having to pay for unemployment? I feel the states will have even more of a mess to clean up if music programs keep being cut.

My mother loves her job and loves her students as well. She understands the importance of having music kept in schools. Whenever I ask any of my mother’s students what their favorite subject is, they always say music. Music class is a time for them to learn and have fun at the same time.

I am currently attending college to earn a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, and I want the music programs to still be in our school systems by the time I become a licensed teacher. Also, if the Lord blesses me with a family, I want my children to be well educated in music as well. If Nebraska fails to take preventative motions to keep music in the schools, then when I do become a teacher, I will do my best to implement so sort of musical activity for my students. I want what is best for the students, and I feel that music is part of that.

Thank you very much for your time. Also, thank you for representing Nebraska. I pray that God will guide you and your decisions in leading our great state.

Sincerely, Elise Lukow

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