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Orange County ranks one of best districts for music education

Designation based on funding, staffing, access to music instruction

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ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Three Florida schools districts are being recognized for their dedication to music education.

Orange County Public Schools, Hillsborough County Public Schools and the School District of Palm Beach County are being designated for the 2019 Best Communities for Music Education (BCME).

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation honors schools and districts that prioritize music education as part of the core curriculum.

Earlier this year, West Orange High School choral director Dr. Jeffrey Redding received the 2019 Grammy Educator Award. The Orange County native and Teacher of the Year has been inspiring students for more than two decades.

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"He's such a great man and pushes me to become a better person," senior choir student Jasmin Taylor said. "He has taught me the true meaning of music and love and compassion, and hard work and I'm very thankful he's come into my life."

Berkley Charter Elementary in Auburndale and Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale are also two of only 98 schools nationwide to receive the 2019 SupportMusic Merit Award, a recognition from the NAMM Foundation.

Researchers at The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas work with the BCME program to evaluate schools and districts based on funding, staffing of highly qualified teachers, commitment to standards and access to music instruction.