Support Us!

Special Music School Ranks #1 on State
English Test


Kaufman Music School's Special Music School is #1!

Congratulations to Special Music School 4th graders, who ranked #1 in NYC on NY State English tests last spring! Every single 4th grader passed the test last spring compared with fewer than a third of student city-wide. Studying music is clearly linked to academic success!

Click here to read an article on SMS's ranking in DNAinfo New York.

Highlights from the article:

"Principal Katie Banucci-Smith credited her West 67th Street school's success to a music-focused curriculum that reinforces the reading skills kids need to do well on standardized tests...

"'They're doing everything from reading a score to being able to diagnose the turns and patterns in music, so they're kind of getting a double dose training in literature,' Banucci-Smith said."

"Jenny Undercofler, the music director of Special Music School, believes that the 'sophisticated act of decoding' involved in learning and reading music is a similar brain skill to picking apart essays.

"She also said the secret to the school's success involved good teaching, small class sizes and that kids who are involved in music 'tend to have good discipline.

"'They're used to practicing their instruments every day,' she said. 'Doing homework is easy compared to practice.'

"Plus, the school's longtime and much-loved fourth-grade English teacher throws a disco party after the test."