Maintain art and music education

To the editor:

While I understand the emphasis on reading, math and science (a national message), we cannot afford to ignore the pursuit of a well-rounded education that includes exposure to art and music at all age levels.

It has been proven time and time again that training in the arts boosts kids in the academic areas of math, reading, cognitive ability, critical thinking and verbal skills. It has also been said that artistic training can improve motivation, concentration, confidence and teamwork. Students with an education rich in the arts have better grade-point averages, score better on standardized tests in reading and math, and have lower dropout rates – findings that cut across all socio-economic categories.

Our schools need more arts education, not less. As it stands now, my daughter, who is in kindergarten at Petrova, only sees her art and music teachers three times a month. She would prefer that it was every day!

To the Board of Education – you have a difficult process ahead of you, I know it will be challenging, but students need the arts. It is critical to their complete and well-rounded education, and I urge you not to further cut the core subject area which has long been underfunded.

Erin Walkow

Saranac Lake