On Wednesday, January 29, representatives of more than 75 preschools and elementary schools in disadvantaged areas1 of France’s Val-d’Oise département attended a day-long seminar on our violin project at Château de Châtenay, a beautiful country estate nearby.
Hosted by the Vareille Foundation and the local office of the French Education Ministry, the day-long event introduced participants to A violin can change the world: how it works, what it takes to launch the project, and how powerful it can be in improving children’s academic performance.
Armed with this information, leaders at each school can now determine how willing and able they are to adopt the project, which we plan to roll out widely in communities that qualify as Cités Éducatives2 in Garges-lès-Gonesse, Sarcelles and Villiers-le-Bel—all located in Val-d’Oise. View video highlights of the day here (in French).
For the past several months, we have worked hand in hand with the French Education Ministry to take our violin project to a whole new level. Our goal is to add 2,000 new four-year-olds by the autumn of 2020, raising the number of participating schools from five to nearly 50.
This commitment to scaling up the project—and to the significant organizational and financial requirements it would involve—is a clear sign that our partners believe in the project and its ability to improve children’s performance.
1 These schools are designated as REP (Réseau d’Éducation Prioritaire, or Priority Education Network) and REP+.
2 A Cité Éducative is a disadvantaged community that meets criteria for enhanced education support from the French State.