Press Release: Leaders Examine the Future of Music Education in New Book

Music Education at a Crossroads Reaffirms the Right of Every Child to Music Education

RESTON, VA (September 3, 2009)Music Education at a Crossroads, a new publication edited by Janet Barrett and published by MENC: The National Association for Music Education and Rowman & Littlefield Education (RLE), is a wealth of historical information aimed at promoting music education for every student now and in the future.

Music Education at a Crossroads is a collection of addresses from the Centennial Congress of MENC: The National Association of Music Education, featuring noted leaders in music education:

  • Paul Lehman – Former President, MENC
  • Bennett Reimer – Professor of Music Education Emeritus, Northwestern University
  • Samuel Hope – Executive Director, National Association of Schools of Music
  • Michael Mark – Professor Emeritus, Towson State University
  • Brenda Welburn – Executive Director, National Association of State Boards of Education
  • Anne Bryant – Executive Director, National School Boards Association

These leaders addressed the challenges and opportunities faced by music educators today. The Centennial Congress renewed a shared professional commitment to a comprehensive music education for all students and discussed the impediments to the vision of the Centennial Declaration: “It is the right of every child to receive a balanced, comprehensive, sequential music education taught by qualified music teachers.”

Editor Janet R. Barrett is associate professor of music education at the Bienen School of Music, Northwestern University. She served as president of the North Central Division of MENC: The National Association for Music Education from 2004-2006.

“MENC: The National Association for Music Education recently celebrated its one-hundredth birthday, which initiated the perfect opportunity to review the focus and purpose of music education. During the Centennial Congress, national decision makers and respected leaders in music education engaged in thoughtful dialogue about the future of our profession and our society. Today’s students embrace a multifaceted approach to learning and their ability to utilize technology seems to be evolving at breakneck speed. Consequently, teachers and our profession need to reframe how we approach music education. This collection shares those conversations and historical documents, which will serve as a guiding light as we venture into a new century.”—Lynn Brinckmeyer, president, MENC: The National Association for Music Education 2006-2008.

Music Education at a Crossroads is available from RLE in paperback for $21.95 and clothbound for $50.00. MENC members receive a discount of 25%. To order or for more information, call 800-462-6420 or visit
MENC: The National Association for Music Education, among the world’s largest arts education organizations, marked its centennial in 2007 as the only association that addresses all aspects of music education. Through membership of more than 75,000 active, retired, and pre-service music teachers, and with 60,000 honor students and supporters, MENC serves millions of students nationwide through activities at all teaching levels, from preschool to graduate school. MENC’s mission is to advance music education by encouraging the study and making of music by all. Since 1907, MENC has worked to ensure that every student has access to a well-balanced, comprehensive, and high-quality program of music instruction taught by qualified teachers. MENC’s activities and resources have been largely responsible for the establishment of music education as a profession, for the promotion and guidance of music study as an integral part of the school curriculum, and for the development of the National Standards for Arts Education. MENC is located at the National Center for Music Education in Reston, VA.