Publication Date

April 2016


Jay Hoggard




English (United States)


In this paper, I will explore the history of philosophical justifications behind including music in the United States public school curriculum. Over the past two hundred years, music educators, superintendents, legislators, and other interested parties have held a wide variety of beliefs about the purpose of music education and the value of providing it to all students. While music programs in schools across the country widely vary in course offerings, funding, and methods, philosophy is a perspective from which we can at least begin to understand the goals that educators might aspire to and the means they might use to achieve them. Starting before music was included as a general curriculum subject in the United States, I will trace education philosophies from their early practical roots, through the aesthetic education movement, and into contemporary philosophical considerations. This paper will examine specific events that shaped education philosophy in recent history.. Studying the beliefs that music educators hold about the value of music historically helps us to understand the relationship between our country’s culture and education system.



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