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The Importance of Education

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Sometimes when the economy dips a president finds it necessary to perform budget cuts, and many times the slashing occurs in the realm of education. Especially at risk are artistic studies or elective courses outside of the usual required curriculum; theater arts and music education are usually the first to go. It's a sad comment on society when the most artistic venues in education are compromised and young people are deprived of critical training and exposure that might launch them into a new world which hitherto might not have existed for them. Some organizations have banded together to help maintain artistic education in the nation's public schools. One such organization is VH1's Save The Music Foundation.

Since 1997, the VH1 Save The Music Foundation has successfully restored and supported instrumental music programs in 1,500 public schools in more than 100 cities across America, including Memphis, Houston, Chicago, New York, Denver, Baltimore, and Milwaukee. Over the past decade, various artists and celebrities have shown their dedication to the VH1 Save The Music Foundation by partnering with the organization as they've reached out to struggling school districts across the country. Many celebrities, including Mariah Carey, Beyonce, Sting, Billy Joel, Kiefer Sutherland, John Legend, Rob Thomas, Alicia Keys, and Jewel, have contributed their time and efforts in an attempt to raise awareness about the importance of music in a child's education.

In a press release dated July 15, 2008, it was stated that LG Mobile Phones and the VH1 Save The Music Foundation were announcing a partnership with Grammy-Nominated singer-songwriter Natasha Bedingfield. According to the release:


Bedingfield is donating a live version of her song ''Angel'' (off her sophomore release, Pocketful of Sunshine) to create an exclusive ringtone to benefit The Foundation. The ringtone can be purchased for $2.99 and will be available beginning Wednesday, July 16 through September 28 at save.vh1.com. Consumers are also able to text SAVE to shortcode 66555 to purchase the ringtone. The promotion will be featured in a vignette highlighting Natasha Bedingfield in her quest to raise awareness and the necessary funding to make sure that music is available for as many children as possible.
Ehtisham Rabbani, Vice President of Product Strategy and Marketing of LG Mobile Phones, said, ''At LG Mobile Phones, we are passionate about the importance of music education. Ringtones are one of the many ways people can bring music to their phones, and we're excited Natasha Bedingfield has joined our partnership with VH1 Save The Music to help raise awareness and additional funding through this mobile experience.''

''We are thrilled that both LG Mobile Phones and Natasha Bedingfield have made this commitment to The Foundation and music education,'' stated Paul Cothran, executive director of the VH1 Save The Music Foundation. He adds, ''Through this partnership, we will continue our mission of restoring instrumental music education programs in America's public schools and raising awareness about the importance of music as a part of every child's complete education.''

The vignette will air regularly on VH1, VH1 Classic, and VH1 Soul throughout the summer, and will be available on vh1.com and vh1savethemusic.com throughout the duration of the promotion. Bedingfield joined other celebrated artists, including Jon Bon Jovi, John Mayer, and Roger Waters, who pledged support for the campaign by performing at the VH1 Save The Music's 10th Anniversary Gala last September, which was also sponsored by LG Mobile Phones. The Gala served as the beginning of the partnership between LG Mobile Phones and the VH1 Save The Music Foundation.

It should be noted that Bedingfield is a philanthropist who has donated time and money to organizations such as the Global Angels, an international children's charity founded by her mother, Molly Bedingfield. She became associated with the organization in 2006 because of her celebrity status, which she wanted to use to help ''people around the world, particularly children, who live in conditions that would horrify us.'' Bedingfield is now an ambassador for Global Angels.

Music is a vital part of a child's education, and celebrities who donate their time and capital to create a heightened awareness of the lack of music education in many public schools should be applauded for their efforts. Education is the last place the government should start cutting back on to save an ailing economy, but unfortunately truncated curricula in public schools have become a fact of life. We should all be aware of the necessity of keeping our educational system intact; otherwise, the future will be lacking in many areas.
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