Industries & Professions /
After decades of program declines, music education is regaining popularity in U.S. schools. A 2006 nationwide Gallup Poll found that 94 percent of respondents believed that musical instrument instruction should be part of school curricula, and 85 percent believed that participating in a school music program corresponds with students earning better grades. As a result, career opportunities in teaching music are expected to be good at the elementary and secondary levels. The National Education Association believes that it will be a challenge to hire enough new elementary and secondary school teachers to meet rising enrollments and replace the large number of retiring teachers, primarily because of low teacher salaries. Although music programs are on the rebound in many schools, some public schools facing severe budget problems are still eliminating music programs, making competition for jobs at these schools even keener. In addition, private music teachers are facing greater competition from instrumental musicians who increasingly must turn to teaching because of the oversupply of musicians seeking playing jobs.