Investigating Our Practices (IOP)

Challenges and place-based solutions in rural music education : a UBC study sponsored by the Rix Family Foundation Prest, Anita


[Conference Program Abstract] Rural music education encounters unique challenges, not limited to declining enrollment, secondary timetabling in small schools, recruitment and retention of specialized teachers, professional isolation, lack of professional development for elementary generalists, and lack of access to private music lessons, live concerts, and/or role models. Given this situation, the purpose of my study is to identify not only the 10 challenges of rural music education, but some place-based solutions related to school structure, professional skills, and community connections with the goal of finding ways to make rural music education both viable and vibrant for students as part of a complete educational experience. In April, I will conduct 45-minute phone interviews with 18 superintendents, administrators, and music teachers from 17 rural school districts in British Columbia and the Northwest Territories. These participants volunteered to be part of this in-depth study after completing a survey I conducted last fall. I will ask open-ended questions on three topics: 1) structural/administrative difficulties in providing a sequential music program, 2) teacher preparation, professional development, and retention, and 3) school/community linkages to local music making. It is my hope that each participant will elaborate on local issues and innovative ideas regarding music education during the course of the interview. At the conference, I will present my initial findings from these interviews. I hope to encourage discussion concerning the issues and initial findings with conference participants in an effort to stimulate thought and awareness of this topic.

Item Citations and Data


Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International