On Tuesday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed Senate Bill (SB) 478 to convert the Early Childhood Music Education Incentive Pilot Program into a permanent program available to school districts across the state.
The Early Childhood Music Education Incentive Program provides assistance to school districts in implementing comprehensive music education programs in kindergarten through second grade.
“Music education has been shown to help children with language development, brain development and fine motor skills,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “Florida has nation-leading early childhood and early literacy programs, and this bill will further help schools build a strong learning foundation for our youngest students.”
The Department of Education will be responsible for administering the program. Eligible schools will receive $150 per student who is enrolled in a comprehensive music education program. Schools must meet the following criteria to be program eligible:
- Includes all students enrolled at the school in kindergarten through second grade.
- Is staffed by certified music educators.
- Provides music instruction for at least 30 consecutive minutes two days a week.
- Complies with class size requirements under the law.
- Complies with the Department of Education’s standards for early childhood music education programs for students in kindergarten through second grade.
The Early Childhood Music Education Incentive Pilot Program was established in 2017 to assist certain school districts in implementing comprehensive music education programs in kindergarten through second grade. Pilot program schools were selected based on their proximity to the University of Florida and Florida International University. The universities were required to evaluate the effectiveness of the pilot program.