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Advance and Strengthen In-School Music Education Programs

Thank you for your interest in “High Notes: The Case for Music Education.” San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory works with programs around the country to help make music education accessible and affordable for all students.

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Work with a music education program consultant

SDYS works with select organizations to strengthen or launch in-school music programs. Contact us regarding SDYS music education consulting programs using the following form:

SDYS Links and Resources to Advance and Strengthen Music Education

Disrupting the Status Quo: El Sistema, SDYS and School Reform

| Grantmakers in the Arts (GIA) Reader: Disrupting the Status Quo: El Sistema, the Community Opus Project, and School Reform in the Chula Vista Elementary School District

The loss of music and arts education programs in U.S. schools during the past two generations is well documented. Learn more about the success of SDYS’ Community Opus Project which has successfully reintroduced an El Sistema-inspired music education program into more than 40 under-served elementary schools in the Chula Vista Elementary School District.

SDYS’ Community Opus Project Phase One Report

| 2010 – 2014

SDYS has witnessed firsthand what researchers repeatedly conclude: significant academic, workforce, and civic engagement gains are associated with high levels of music participation for all youth, especially those of lower socioeconomic backgrounds. Read about the first 4 years of progress as we implemented our own Community Opus Project in the Chula Vista Elementary School District.

SDYS’ Community Opus Project Phase Two Report

| 2015 – 2017

Learn about the truly dramatic impact that our Community Opus Project has had on student outcomes, test scores and community involvement in our Phase Two report. By working with district leaders, schools, parents, and a wide array of community partners, SDYS’ Community Opus Project has returned music and all arts education to the 30,000 children of California’s largest K-6 school district after a fifteen year absence.

Leading the Cause for Music Education

| 6-minute video

This brief introduction to the San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory’s Community Opus Program makes the case for music education delivered in an after-school format and the multiple benefits experienced by schools, students and families.

TEDx San Diego: Music for All is a Group Activity

| 12-minute video

Dalouge Smith has transformed the San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory into a community instigator for restoring and strengthening music education in schools. Learn more about SDYS’s first community music program inspired by Venezuela’s El Sistema concept in this inspiring TEDx talk.

Equity in STEAM Education – Sally Ride Science STEAM Series

| 54-minute video

In this inaugural Sally Ride STEAM Series event, panelists Dalouge Smith of the San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory, Karen Flammer of UC San Diego, Heather Lattimer of the University of San Diego and Francisco Escobedo, the Superintendent of the Chula Vista Elementary School District, explore the importance of STEAM to the innovation economy as well as how to best to ensure equity in education.

STEAM in San Diego: From Sup. to Nuts and Bolts: STEAMConnect Ascend Conference 2015

| 56-minute video

Laura Kohn of the Education Synergy Alliance calls on leaders in industry, education, and arts to share their experiences in building support for STEAM. Dalouge Smith of the San Diego Youth Symphony, Ed Hidalgo of Qualcomm, Suzette Lovely of the Carlsbad Unified School District, Roman Del Rosario of the Sweetwater Union High School District, and Ed Abeyta of UC San Diego Extension discuss their work with Kohn at the 2015 STEAMConnect Ascend Conference.

Changing Lives: Gustavo Dudamel, El Sistema, and the Transformative Power of Music

| by Tricia Tunstall

In this “vivid story” (Economist), Tricia Tunstall “chronicles the origins and growth of Venezuela’s acclaimed El Sistema national music education program” and illustrates its overarching goal: to rescue children from the depredations of poverty through music. As an El Sistema-inspired program, SDYS continues to share the story of how arts education can indeed effect positive social change in the United States and around the world.



High Notes: The Case for Music Education on UCTV


Children who study a musical instrument are more likely to excel in all of their studies, work better in teams, have enhanced critical thinking skills, stay in school, and pursue further education.

Perceptual ability with music correlates to early reading and language skills in young children.

Schools with music programs have an estimated 90.2% graduation rate and 93.9% attendance rate compared to schools without music education, which average 72.9% graduation and 84.9% attendance.

San Diego Youth Symphony