British Columbia Music Educators' Association
British Columbia Music Educators' Association (BCMEA). Organization founded in 1957 with Sherwood Robson as president. Its objectives at that time were to unite the various groups teaching music in the schools and to encourage the creation of a curriculum in music education at the University of British Columbia. In 1962 the BCMEA amalgamated with the Secondary Instrumental Teachers' Association, thus becoming affiliated with the British Columbia Teachers' Federation. This affiliation gave the BCMEA a greater voice in curriculum development and in-service training in the schools.
The BCMEA believes that music is an essential part of a basic education. Its main goals are to maintain and improve existing music-education programs in BC schools and to promote excellence in music instruction. The association facilitates information exchange between its members, other arts groups and government organizations. It fosters the professional development of its members through a yearly conference that emphasizes innovative trends, introduces new teaching materials and features important personalities in music education. The association also publishes a journal and a newsletter. The journal, the BC Music Educator, which was established in 1958, is published on an annual basis. An online version has been available since 1997.
The BCMEA awards five $500 scholarships to Grade 12 students who plan to pursue careers in music education. To its members, the association offers Service Awards in four categories: Honorary Life Member, Professional Music Educator(s), Special Distinguished Service, and Outstanding Administrator. The BCMEA is open to members of the British Columbia Teachers' Federation and includes membership in the Canadian Music Educator's Association.