Sarah Fard is a guitarist and educator who teaches Adapted Music and Identity and Culture in the Music Classroom as part of Longy’s Master of Music in Music Education program. She also teaches at Medford High School in Medford, MA. Her focus is on making music education more accessible and inclusive.
In school, I was often the only female-identifying guitarist or musician in the room. I was so self-conscious, I was always the first to turn the volume down on my amp. A student’s music education experience has the potential to be very empowering or very othering, so it’s important for educators to think critically about their approach and put more representation in the classroom. There is also a
need for more adaptive approaches to music education. We need to change our expectations of what a music classroom looks like and how we expect students to engage with music.
Longy’s MM/ME stands out because we’ve built a team of people who are driving change both in and outside the classroom. As a teacher who knows firsthand what it’s like to work in a public school in 2022, I am able to offer our students relevant and real world practices. The change begins with the teachers, and I’m so excited to be part of reworking the concept of music education—it’s long overdue.