The city of Ringgold has approved a proclamation identifying March as "Music In Our Schools" month.
During the city's March 12 council meeting, Councilman Kelly Bomar proposed the proclamation.
"The proclamation," Bomar said, "says that music and other arts significantly enhance the morale of our school environment and prepare our children for a productive role in our society, and that the city of Ringgold proudly supports the many students and teachers that dedicate their time and talent to music performance arts and education."
Bomar has taught music at Westside Elementary in Rossville since 2007 and also coaches percussion for the Ringgold High School band.
"Our area is very rich in tradition as far as all the arts go," he said. "I think it's a good step for us to officially designate it from the city government for our city schools."
Councilwoman Sara Clark added that art and music programs need as much community and government support as they can get.
"I really support music and the arts because in my experience in education in different places where I've lived, those are the first things to get cut," Clark said. "Whatever the city can do to support music and support the arts, performing arts as well as fine arts, is an excellent step on our part to say that we're supportive of these programs."
Mayor Pro Tem Terry Crawford, whose grandson recently graduated from Jacksonville State University on a music scholarship, believes extracurricular programs like music can create more well-rounded young people.
"I've always thought that if you give a kid a baseball glove, a pair of running shoes, or put a horn in his hand that you've taken them off the street," Crawford said. "I can name you child after child from the Ringgold area that has been given a scholarship for music."