SMS In The News

A Talk with Katie

“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. 

For more on the DNA article, click here!

“MUSIC SCHOOL CRANKS OUT GENIUSES”

Kids at this music school rock state English and math exams.  By Selim Algar | August 25, 2016
They’re hitting an academic high note. Students at a Manhattan public school spend more time practicing their piano and cello than hitting their textbooks — and still manage to drown out the competition in math and English.  The Special Music School at the Kaufman Music Center, which includes kindergarten through 12th grade, is the only city campus that makes music a core part of its curriculum. And its teachers credit the melody-making for their students’ chart-topping test scores. To read the article, click this link:
http://nypost.com/2016/08/25/kids-at-this-music-school-rock-state-english-and-math-exams/

SMS Sings for 2013 Inauguration

Special Music School Elementary School Chorus, led by Sean Hartley, sang for the Second Inauguration of President Barack Obama in 2013.
The kids start singing at 3 minutes and 17 seconds, if you want to skip ahead. Enjoy!