We were proud to be featured in the Dedham Times last week, and wish to thank the Dedham School Committee for continuing to support our partnership. Article featured below.
School Committee Recognizes the Dedham School of Music
By Kate Martin
"On Wednesday night, the School Committee celebrated the Dedham School of Music.
The School is an independent organization, officially unaffiliated with the Dedham Public Schools.
It has as its goal making, learning, and performing music both affordable and accessible.
It was started by various interested parties in town in 2008, when budget cuts forced the schools to reduce their elementary school music programs.
President Frank Mullen said it has gone from an initial class of eight children, to a thriving institution of 270 students.
Some are from the Dedham Public Schools, and others are from the Rashi School, Dedham Country Day School, and the Kilmer School in West Roxbury.
In an intergenerational coup, they have at least one student from NewBridge on the Charles.
"It's really a community school, and we believe strongly in collaboration, so we work with the COmmunity House, which provides us a home, Mother Brook Arts and Community Center, which gives us space for lessons and performance, and the Parkway Concert Orchestra," he said.
Mullen listed various benefits of music for a growing student's academic and social skills, saying that it helps develop language and reasoning skills, improves memory retention and memory retention skills, and helps kids stay engaged in school. Also, he said it has documented positive effects on testing results.
The school has both private lessons and group classes available, for a fee.
Executive Director Amy Fichera said they have a recital on December 9, the first of the Bluegrass Slow Jam classes in mid-December, and they hope to begin an intergenerational community band.
They also hope to join with the Tufts Beelzebubs, for a March performance.
Before the various board members spoke, cellist Noah Apuzzio and flutists Eitan Levy and Vivian Boudette played several movements of an etude. Apuzzio and Boudette attend Dedham Middle School, and Levy is a student at the Rashi School.
"That," said Middle School music teacher Jeff Taylor, "is just one example of our collaborations. We're not just helping the public schools, but a bunch of the surrounding schools, melding into one community."
Superintendent Mike Welch said he was glad to see them. "I've been so proud to have the schools partner with the School of Music. I want to make sure every kid who wants to make music this way can. And my gosh, the discipline, maturity and confidence of these kids? It's absolutely phenomenal."
Committee Chair Susan Butler recognized the various founders and current Board members in the audience, including Michelle Apuzzio, and Mike Emery as well as former School Committee members Fred Wofford, Henri Gough and Margaret Matthews.
Taylor said the Dedham School of Music is currently in the midst of an instrument donation drive.
"If you have instruments that have been taking up space or collecting dust, we would love to have them. Now through December 16. You can drop them off at the Community House from 10-3, or at the High School concerts."
For more information, visit the School's Facebook page, or www.dedhamschoolofmusic.org."