ALBANY, N.Y. June 12, 2013 - New York State United Teachers today pressed the leadership of Buffalo's schools to reverse deep cuts to the district's instrumental music programs, saying the systemic elimination of music is depriving the city's children of the rich, well-rounded education they deserve.
NYSUT President Richard C. Iannuzzi said Wednesday's percussion performance by students on the steps of City Hall is a fitting way to protest unacceptable cuts to music. This year, the school district is eliminating 14 of 28 music programs in city schools on top of other, equally devastating cuts to music over the last decade.
"U2's great singer and humanitarian Bono once said, 'Music can change the world because it can change people.' In Buffalo, we need to change people - and their priorities - to ensure students and their educators are valued. The dedication, skill and talent exhibited by these Buffalo students is just one small part of the positive change that educators can bring if the city invests more in its public schools; respects the voices of its classroom professionals and makes a greater commitment to equity and opportunity for all of the city's schoolchildren. NYSUT calls on Buffalo's school leadership to fully restore instrumental music programs in all of the city's public schools."
NYSUT, the state's largest union, represents more than 600,000 teachers, school-related professionals, academic and professional faculty in higher education, professionals in education and health care and retirees. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association and the AFL-CIO.