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I wanted to respond to the many emails and phone clalls I have been receiving as of late about students discontinuing their music lessons due to the increase of work and academic study demanded by standardized testing. I have been aware that there are tests being administered that not all parents are happy about. Commercials on my tv have told me that such examinations are causing stress on students.
A parent’s intuition about this is to remove their student from extra-curricular activities to “help them focus”
The pros and cons of Standardized testing has been a topic of controversy (in my personal experience) since I was in grade school in the 90’s. In Elementary is was the SAT 9’s which was a grade school version of the SATs, in middle and high school Arizona had the AIMS test. And the ever unavoidable  SAT’s and ACTs to test into college.
My memo isn’t to get you to fight against these exams. As a student of such tests I know they are inevitable and your students will take them! Although, if you do have a choice… choose wisely!
My note here is to talk to you about shutting down a child’s extra curriculars. Yes our kids do a lot! But what does music do for them! Studying piano, violin and voice alone enhances the very skills needed to be able to test! Studying academics is a very mundane task. By taking away expressive outlets for your student- you are increasing emotional and academic stress. I am sure most are aware of the “Mozart Effect” where it was tested that students who studied just LISTENING to classical music placed higher points and percentages when it came to their academics. Students taking  music lessons tested even higher.
Music students in general are more well rounded, well, spoken and more thoughtful than those who don’t take music.
I myself have grown up playing the violin and was in community orchestra, school orchestra and state orchestra. I also did choir and theater when I was in high school.
I graduated high school with a 4.4 GPA. (AP classes increased my gpa) and in doing so I received a FULL RIDE scholarship to Northern Az University all expenses paid. I received smaller but just as significant honors from the other schools I applied to as well, but chose to attend NAU for their writing program. Long story short, I became an educated musician.
What is my point… well my parents say that my music studies are what helped me excel. They didn’t have to badger me about critical thinking, coordination, memorization and problem solving techniques because I was gaining those skills from music study. I listened to a wide-range of music. It was my love for Beethoven however that got me though a bunch of research papers and study for exams.
Please review the stats and commentary I have attached. It is offered by the Music Matters Campaign via the Arts Educations Partnership.
What can WE here at the BOROUGH do for you to relieve stress from your students? We can adjust our teaching approach and offer 30 to 60mins of relief from study. We won’t require any amount of over-bearing practice, we will properly assess a students needs and offer them a place to express and not to stress!!

Please re-consider (if you’ve made your choice to take a break or quit) after reviewing stats and studies conducted about music students before you relinquish your lesson time!
We are here to enhance your students life… not bring it down! We will be please to re-schedule any lessons that conflict with testing, or if a student is simply exhausted as they tend to get! Bottom line: WE GET IT! And we WANT to help!
Please feel free to contact me at any time if you have any questions or concerns!

Noëlle A. Francis 

Artistic Director 





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720 Monroe Street E-502

Hoboken, New Jersey 07030


School Hours:

Monday: 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM

Tuesday: 3:00 PM to 6:30 PM

Wednesday: 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM

Thursday: CLOSED

Friday: 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM

Saturday: 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM

720 MONROE ST E502,