2022 Colorado Music Educators Association Conference 2022 Colorado Music Educators Association Conference

5 S.M.A.R.T. Steps to RETAINING Our Beginners

- MST
Broadmoor Hall C

Marcia Neel
Music Achievement Council

Marcia has served as a public school music educator of 22 years and Secondary Fine Arts Coordinator in the Clark County School District (Las Vegas, NV) for an additional 14 years. Under her leadership, the secondary music elective program grew to over 55,000 participants in 56 middle schools and 38 high schools. She served two terms as president of the Nevada Music Educators Association as well as President of MENC’s Western Division. Marcia now serves as president of Music Education Consultants, Inc; a consortium of music education professionals which works with educational organizations, arts associations, and school districts to foster the growth and breadth of standards-based, articulated music education programs.

In 2016, Marcia was named Senior Director of Education for Yamaha Corporation of America and subsequently, a Yamaha Master Educator. She serves as Education Advisor to the Music Achievement Council, a non-profit organization whose sole purpose is to assist directors in recruiting and retaining students in instrumental music programs through effective professional development programs and related complimentary materials. Neel also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Percussive Arts Society. She is also highly regarded for her advocacy acumen at the local, state, and national levels and participates annually in the NAMM Foundation’s D.C. Fly-in to meet with Members of Congress to garner their support for Music and Arts Education funding.

Marcia’s in-demand "5 S.M.A.R.T. Steps" session provides directors with creative solutions for retaining beginners based upon the five concepts of Success, Modeling, Activity, Reflection, and Trust.


Would you be surprised to learn that within one short year, 60% of beginning students are no longer playing? You've worked hard to recruit—and even re-recruit—beginners into your instrumental music program so this year, more than ever before, it’s all about RETAINING them! Actionable steps that can be taken by parents, administrators, and the students themselves will make all the difference whether in an urban, suburban or rural setting. In this on-target session, directors of all experience and expertise levels will learn about the role they can play in these 5 S.M.A.R.T. Steps to RETAINING Our Beginners.

Looking to dive deeper into the content of the session? Check out these supporting materials: