“Music and Academics Work Hand in Hand at Upper West Side School”: DNA Info: Emily Frost, October 3, 2016

Principal Katie Banucci-Smith has her dream job. A child musician who attended a music conservatory for college and went on to sing opera before falling into teaching, Banucci-Smith heads the Special Music School. The K-12 public school at 129 W. 67th St. perfectly marries her two passions and does that for students as well, she said.

DNA: What are you looking for in selecting the 15 students for your kindergarten class?
We’re not looking to pick someone, we’re looking to find a match. We’re looking to find people that really want to do this and kids that seem to have an aptitude for doing it.
We try to build diverse classrooms. Some have parents that are in the field, some don’t have parents that are in the field, this is their first music test ever. We look at it from like a thousand different diversity lenses. We try to pick half girls, half boys. We try to pick socioeconomic diversity. 

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