Guitar Education Standards

Public schools may not offer any class that does not meet state standards as defined by the State Board of Education.  Every class offered MUST be preapproved by the State Board of Education.  In addition, all music classes are encouraged to follow the National Music Standards as defined by the National Association for Music Education.  To simplify this task, the NAfME Guitar Council has published the Best Practices for Guitar Education which clearly defines the skills and techniques to teach to fulfill state and national standards.  In addition, the Guitar Foundation of America has published its own set of standards.

We understand that many music educators take jobs at schools for the purpose of teaching band, choir, or orchestra.  In so many cases, the job also involves teaching guitar.  Non-guitar-playing educators somehow think it is acceptable to ignore standards and ignore the well-defined requirements for teaching guitar.  The justification is, "but I don't play the guitar."  While once tolerated by some school districts, the expectation for music educators to teach to standards in all subjects is being taken more seriously.

These links are to state and national standards.  Please know that teachers have been dismissed from employment for not following standards.  Most importantly, guitar students deserve to be exposed to the skills and techniques associated with these standards much like music students in other disciplines.

NAfME National Standards for Guitar

State Music Standards

NAfME Best Practices for Guitar

Guitar Foundation of America Mastery List of Skills

Guitar Standards in Virginia -Dr. Kevin Vigil