Supporting Our Kids

On October 10th, 2019, Jazz Up Jackson Street engaged our community to raise funds for the music pathway in the Central District of Seattle Schools. It featured guest artist alumni performers from Washington and Garfield, as well as performances by the current WMS and GHS Jazz Bands. The evening culminated in a performance by an alumni big band. All proceeds from the event will go toward the continued work of building equitable and inclusive systems in the music programs at our elementary, middle, and high schools.

School music programs in the Central District have a long history of excellence that has been recognized both regionally and nationally. However, the student musicians in these programs have historically underrepresented the diversity in our schools. 

We have a five-year goal of reaching more equal demographic representation across our music programs, particularly in advanced ensembles. For example, starting in the 2019-2020 school year, all 6th grade Washington Middle School students will be enrolled in a performing ensemble (Band/Choir/Orchestra). This will require a significant increase in funding toward the purchase of new instruments, method books, and sheet music to ensure that all students can participate fully. Offering a rigorous music education experience to all students requires significant funding for resources, supplementary instruction opportunities, and scholarship availability to cover the cost of travel experiences. 

Allocation of Fundraising:

All funds collected for this event will benefit the continued work of building equity and creating more sustainable and demographically representative music programs at our schools. The funds will not just benefit jazz band students. Here are some examples of how the funds will be used:

* Targeted instrument coaching for beginner level musicians

* Hiring coaches and instructors that represent the demographics of our community

* Outreach and funding support for feeder elementary schools 

* Developing a more culturally responsive music curriculum 

* Community engagement and outreach events

Engaging our Jazz Community:

Jazz has been an important part of our school music community for well over 40 years. We are reaching out to our former and current families, contributors, and sponsors to ask for their help in reaching our fundraising goal and by attending the event. Our goal is to provide an awe-inspiring performance that engages our community and addresses the needs of our schools to ensure that all students have access to an incredible music education.


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