BORDENTOWN, NJ – Bordentown Regional High School’s music program is being recognized for its outstanding music education classes, as it was awarded the SupportMusic Merit Award from the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation for the second year in a row.
The NAMM Foundation’s goal is to advance active participation in music-making across the country and celebrates and promotes the intrinsic value of music education to a community.
Bordentown Regional High School (BRHS) was one of only 80 schools from around the country to receive the award, which recognizes a school’s commitment and support for music education classes. The SupportMusic Merit Award (SMMA) is a distinction awarded as part of the NAMM Foundation’s Best Communities for Music Education (BCME) program, which helps raise local awareness of quality music programs nationwide. The BCME program, now in its 22nd year, evaluates schools and school districts based on funding, staffing of highly qualified teachers, commitment to standards and access to music instruction.
“The NAMM is especially important because it recognizes not only our fantastic students and music staff for their accomplishments, but also the administrators, Superintendent, Board of Education and community for their support for the music program in Bordentown,” said Michael Montalto, Director of Bands at BRHS. “This support includes not only musical support but financial support, adequate facilities for our rehearsals and support from our great transportation department. Our music program requires all hands-on-deck, and I am extremely appreciative of the support from the Bordentown community.”
In recognizing this year’s award winners, the NAMM Foundation noted the challenges that both teachers and students faced in 2020, as the ongoing pandemic forced schools to close their buildings and instruction move from in-person to virtual. Music education can be especially difficult to instruct and learn virtually, as playing together is difficult to manage online due to technology tending to lag and distort the sound. The camera can also be a problem for teachers because it generally only shows one angle.
“Yet, in the schools and districts recognized by the NAMM Foundation this week, dedicated and creative music teachers, supported by a wider community, have succeeded in reinventing music instruction. In so doing, they have brightened the lives of thousands of students, breaking down isolation,” said the Foundation.
The Band program at BRHS is no stranger to awards. The Jazz Ensemble took home the second place prize at Boston’s Berklee Jazz Festival in 2019, and the Marching Band finished in third place at the 2019 National Championships in Allentown, PA, where they also took home the first place Music Caption award. The program has also won Outstanding Section awards at the Essentially Ellington Jazz Festival at Temple University, and the concert and jazz bands have also had first place performances at Music in the Parks.
For more information about the NAMM Foundation, visit its website HERE.