Save the Music at PS 48

Today’s guest blogger is Kelly Barrameda, Team Leader for the Alcoa sponsored PS 48 team in the South Bronx. PS 48 has entered the GLEE Give A Note voting contest which will support music education by awarding $1 million dollars in prize money to music programs in jeopardy throughout the United States.

Despite the many challenges the South Bronx community faces, I am constantly inspired by the commitment to innovation, perseverance in advocating for what they need, and ability to come together for a good cause. In an area that was once a hotbed of Latin jazz and dubbed the birthplace of hip hop, having music class only once a week (if that) and inadequate resources is completely unacceptable. So the faculty and staff at P.S. 48 decided to do something about it, and entered the GLEE Give a Note Project. I spoke with Ms. Difilippi and Ms. Salguero, the music teachers at P.S. 48, who said that this initiative was “completely driven by the kids, who refused to stand idly by and watch their music program die.” The entire school was involved in the process, from writing lyrics to singing and starring in the video. They wanted to make a difference, and although they are struggling with voting resources they remain optimistic and hopeful. Please vote for my school once a day HERE until Monday, November 7th!

The students at PS 48 weren’t the only ones alarmed and moved to action by the lack of music education they receive. Alex Link, a City Year corps member serving at P.S. 48, was able to get Sam Ash Music Stores to donate $25 towards new instruments and runs a Percussion Ensemble enrichment club twice a week. The club provides a safe space and creative outlet for our students to channel their energy, and leaves them feeling empowered by the new skills they are mastering. To catch a glimpse of what music brings to P.S. 48, click the video below!