Best Communities For Music Education

Fargo Public Schools (FPS) has been honored with the Best Communities for Music Education designation from the NAMM Foundation for its outstanding commitment to music education. FPS joins 527 districts across the country in receiving the prestigious award in 2017. This is the 14th time FPS has received this designation of the 18 years the award has been granted.

The Best Communities Music Education designation is awarded to school districts that demonstrate outstanding achievement in efforts to provide music access and education to all students. Districts that have been recognized by the NAMM Foundation are often held up as models for other educators looking to boost their own music education programs.

To qualify for the Best Communities designation, FPS answered detailed questions about funding, graduation requirements, music class participation, instruction time, facilities, support for the music program, and community music-making programs. Responses were verified with school officials and reviewed by The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas.

FPS Performing Arts Curriculum Specialist, Denese Odegaard stated, “During my years as a music educator, I witnessed students grow in confidence to achieve more than they dreamed possible because of the skills learned through the processes of creating and performing music. The power of music to connect non-verbally to others; the need to problem-solve and adapt to others instantaneously during rehearsals and performances; and the grit practiced in perfecting a performance all preface the success of a student in the future. Students learn about the culture and humanity of our society through music-making and understand how music relates to other courses such as history, science, language arts, and math.”

Students learn about the culture and humanity of our society through music-making and understand how music relates to other courses such as history, science, language arts, and math.


The NAMM Foundation is a nonprofit supported in part by the National Association of Music Merchants and its approximately 10,300 members around the world. The foundation advances active participation in music making across the lifespan by supporting scientific research, philanthropic giving, and public service programs. For more information about the NAMM Foundation, visit www.nammfoundation.org.