There are many barriers to music education in Acadiana, including lack of financial resources, limited transportation, and most importantly, no system-wide offering of orchestra classes in the Lafayette Parish School System (LPSS). This can create significant hurdles for children who want to pursue a stringed instrument, but are not accepted into the magnet school track, and who can’t otherwise afford private music lessons. ASO is the only organization in Acadiana uniquely qualified to fill this gap.
ASO launched After School Strings in January 2023, in partnership with LPSS, with the distinct mission of expanding access to in-school orchestra education for Lafayette public school students.
*Currently piloting at S.J. Montgomery Elementary*
Students learn how to play a stringed instrument in group music lessons, twice per week, at their school. ASO provides professional teaching artists, healthy snacks, bus transportation, and an instrument and case for each student to use as their own throughout the school year.
We are able to provide After School Strings for FREE to students and their families, because our donors strongly believe in the mission of the program. And, we hope you do too!
ASO has an ambitious dream of offering After School Strings in EVERY LPSS elementary school. ONLY YOU can help us grow and expand this program to more schools, and impact even more lives.
"I was a student in the Acadiana area that had my orchestra program cut at the beginning of my freshman year of high school (...nearly 15 years ago). I still remember the hurt I felt seeing the orchestra courses on my class schedule dissolved and replaced with generic electives that did not ignite a fire in me. Four years later, it was time to choose a college major, and music was completely out of the question. Even extra curricular ensembles like marching band and symphony orchestra had become completely out of reach. I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, but I cannot help but wonder what kinds of doors would have been opened had the orchestra program at my school survived. Music education does so much good for the brain, no matter the student or their capabilities. Thank you for the work that ASO does on a regular basis. Keep 'igniting those fires'!" -After School Strings supporter