Inclusivity in Music Education

National Association for Music Education 


By law and by custom, those involved in the delivery of education in our nation strive to bring education to the entire populace. Excluding some Americans from music education denies them access to one of the core academic subjects, music, as an essential path toward meeting their educational needs, breaking social and economic barriers, and accommodating diverse learning and teaching. Music education must involve and serve individuals from all demographic strata in our society.

The Music Educator’s Role

The music education profession as a whole has made great strides over the last decades in refining instructional techniques and identifying best instructional practices, including an indispensable variety of approaches to delivery of wide-ranging content. Members of the National Association for Music Education play a pivotal role in achieving inclusivity in music education. The knowledge and skills that all students need are outlined in the National Standards for Music Education. The role of the music educator is threefold: (1) to strive to ensure that all students have access to music programs that address achievement in all nine areas set forth in the National Standards, (2) to present a curriculum that encompasses a wide variety of styles and genres of music, and (3) to embrace the best instructional techniques and practices.


  • Teachers’ backgrounds and their own communities’ needs should inform efforts to achieve inclusivity.
  • Inclusivity comprises any and all students who want to learn music, regardless of exceptionality.
  • Music educators should employ the best practices identified by professionals in the field.
  • All students should have access to music programs that address achievement in all areas set forth in the National Standards.
  • Students should study and be engaged by the widest practical variety of styles and genres of music that are broadly representative of America’s cultural diversity.

NAfME welcomes membership involvement in the following leadership activities:

  • working to provide members with the skills, information and collegial support necessary to deal with an increasingly diverse society
  • making a concerted effort to expand in membership and service consistent with expansion in the environment that we serve
  • including diverse interests, values, and preferences and inviting more member participation
  • encouraging early identification of new and emerging leaders from all groups represented within NAfME and in society as a whole
  • actively conducting and promoting systematic, scientifically based research into the best practices for delivering music instruction to students and engaging in the dissemination of the results of that research