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MUSE Academy Brings New Independent School Dedicated to the Arts to Heart of Brooklyn’s Cultural District

MUSE Academy now offers a new alternative for New York area parents who want their children to reap the proven intellectual benefits that come with intensive exposure to music and performing arts from a young age.
“It has been long established that consistent, high quality music education promotes rapid cognitive development in children. We know that music education raises the IQ level in children by around 7.5 points, or close to 20%, and that musical training is associated with higher scores in both math and language tests. Recent findings in brain scans and neuroscience underline just how profound these benefits are to a child’s rapidly developing neural networks. In a recent study at MIT, scientists note that music sensitivity may be more fundamental to the human brain than is speech perception,” said Deborah Bradley-Kramer, MUSE Academy’s Head of School.
Deborah, who taught Music Humanities in Columbia University’s Core Curriculum for nearly 20 years and was Director of Music Performance there for most of that time, recently wrote an essay on the impact of music on cognitive development in children. Her experiences teaching at Columbia and at Juilliard led her to assume a leadership role at MUSE Academy and create a model program, demonstrating how music and performing arts can accelerate academic development and unleash creative thinking throughout all disciplines. MUSE Academy, a new pre-K through 12 independent school housed within the Brooklyn Music School, fulfills a critical need for high quality, humanist education in Brooklyn’s cultural district.
America Lags Behind Other Developed Countries Academically, and in Music Instruction – Coincidence? It is well known that the United States lags far behind other developed nations in math, science and reading. One of the biggest cross-national tests is the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), which every three years measures reading ability, math and science literacy and other key skills among 15-year-olds in many countries. The most recent PISA results, (2015), placed the U.S. at an unimpressive 38th out of 71 countries in math and 24th in science. A survey of members of the American Association for the Advancement of Science found that just 16% called the U.S. K-12 STEM education “above average.”
Lack of a consistent and high quality music education curriculum at most American schools may be a contributing cause to lagging test scores. Arts Education has a spotty history within American primary and secondary schools. The benefits of such education are well recognized and documented. But while there are clearly established mandates in New York State Education Law requiring that students in grades 7-12 receive core arts instruction taught by certified teachers, a report by the NYC Comptroller noted that “the provision of arts education in New York City’s public schools has become both inequitable and underfunded.” An astounding 25% percent of NYC high schools, 24% of middle schools and 9% of elementary schools in New York City lack partnerships with any arts and cultural organizations whatsoever-and this, in a city that boasts some of the world’s premier performing organizations, creative artists, and venues.
“Our vision is to create a unique educational approach in which music and performing arts are not merely supplements, but integral parts of a rigorous academic education, providing context and creative expression to reinforce learning as a joyful activity,” said Deborah. “Beginning at age 3, our students will have daily instruction in both music and dance and movement, drawing upon a wide range of cultural and musical traditions. Performance and composition are central to the experience of becoming fluent in the languages of music, dance, and drama.”
“Brooklyn Music School is proud of the achievements of so many of our students who have gone on to attend leading colleges and universities, in many cases with music scholarships,” said Crocker Coulson, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Brooklyn Music School. “MUSE Academy offers families the opportunity to provide their children with a fully integrated educational experience, in which humanities, math, science, and foreign languages are all taught using an inquiry-based model of learning and infused with creativity.”
MUSE Academy is now accepting applications for Pre-K3 through Grade 2 for Fall 2018. The first step on the admissions journey is to attend an information session at MUSE Academy. These are held throughout the school year and into the summer in order to provide maximum flexibility to families researching educational options. Become one of the founding families by submitting your application, and get ready to begin the journey towards a MUSE Academy education for your child!

About the Author

New York Trend is a weekly news publication that focuses on issues and lifestyles of the African & Caribbean American communities throughout the New York metropolitan area and Nassau and Suffolk Counties of Long Island. It is a respected and well recognized news publication that has been in existence since 1989. Owner, Publisher and Executive Director, Dr. Teresa Taylor Williams has been at the helm of this award-winning publication since its inception. New York Trend continues to be the only black woman-owned, metropolitan newspaper in New York and Long island. New York Trend is the largest black-owned newspaper throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.

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