Support Statement

We add our collective voices to the chorus decrying violent and passive expressions of hate directed towards Asian members of our American fabric. The Suzuki method and philosophy originated in Asia from the brilliance of founder Shinichi Suzuki, whose summative mantra was “Where love is deep, much can be accomplished.” We extend deepest sorrow in regard to the most recent exhibit of hate towards Asian Americans, and express solidarity with our SAA members, students, and family members of Asian descent. Our mission continues to be to develop beautiful hearts through beautiful tone, and to encourage intentional respect and deep love for each teacher, student, and parent engaged in this life-long process of becoming.

We all have a part to contribute in building a more just society in which everyone is safe, and where diverse voices are heard, treated with respect and dignity, and celebrated.

The 2020 SAA Membership Survey was completed by 14% of our members and provides input and direction for the Board. We were pleased with the level of strong support for our SAA Ends statements and goals. Toward achieving those Ends, we have begun implementing and adjusting policies focusing on increased communication and greater equity, diversity, and inclusion.

As our work continues, these are some of the changes that are in progress.

Our Suzuki Early Childhood Education curriculum and repertoire revisions team, Sharon Jones and Lynn McCall, have completed their work and are preparing a short course to introduce SECE teachers to the new material. We are grateful for the support of Early Childhood Education consultant, Dr. Beverly Roberson Jackson. “From the start of this consultation assignment, regarding your SECE Revisions, I found your curriculum refreshing. I was impressed by the attitude of your program to present an inclusive and welcoming message to all of its families, regardless of structure, racial or cultural heritage.” (Jackson)

Plans for a new SECE recording are now getting underway.

Online Teacher Training has been continuing throughout the fall and winter months. Most North American summer institutes are planning online training and hoping to reach teachers for whom traveling to an institute has been impossible. Since August 1, 2020, SAA has registered 2,021 units of training! Institute listings are featured in the newest American Suzuki Journal, on the website and coming to your mailbox soon.

We were pleased to award our first scholarship from the Michele Higa George Suzuki Outreach Fund earlier this month to Teddy Wiggins for Unit One Violin Teacher Training.

Over 80 teachers participated in A Long Talk about the Uncomfortable Truth”, presented by Kyle Williams. This DEIA training was jointly sponsored by Atlanta Suzuki Institute, Western Springs School of Talent Education, and the SAA. Thanks to the Atlanta Suzuki Institute Staff and Board for hosting this very successful event! Much appreciation for the course and positive feedback continues! We look forward to providing more opportunities in the future.

Partnering with Consultant Nwandi Lawson

We have partnered with Nwandi Lawson of The Virtues Collective: ([javascript protected email address]) to offer an elective course “Communicating Honor for Diversity.” Our principal goal is to improve communications not only within the SAA, but to the world.

The goal is to honor and show great respect for yourself and other people and for the values and rules you live by. The “Communicating Honor for Diversity” program includes four instructional sessions (12 hours) of training and practice with strategies for teacher-family music education collaborations that celebrate diverse engagements and celebrate participation by all races, ethnicities, identities, religions, and cultures.

Participants will master five communication strategies, become more familiar with the contributions of the diverse people who reside in the Americas, and develop action plans to increase meaningful diversity in their own work.

Because space is limited, there is an application process to indicate your commitment to the instructional process, confidence to try new approaches, and generosity in sharing these principles and actions with others in a “train-the-trainer” model.

Watch for the application very soon!

The SAA Board is committed to listening, learning, and working together with the SAA community to encourage equity, inclusivity, and respect.