LAS VEGAS (FOX5) — Music stores are struggling to get by during the pandemic. Many local stores rely on renting instruments from students, but with distance learning, most families don’t rent.
David Kessler of Kessler & Sons Music said rentals were down more than 50%. The storage unit that normally remains empty in September is full.
“They’re rent-ready, kid-ready,” Kessler said.
the kids don’t take them home.
“With not just distance learning, but with the split-semester program in colleges, there are a lot of programs that just don’t have a year-round band this time around,” Kessler said.
The CCSD donated instruments to some students. Kessler’s shop helped prepare them.
“Our repair shop doubled this summer because we were cleaning instruments for the Clark County School District, sterilizations, and disinfectants,” Kessler said.
He said the repair shop and website are the reason their family store will make it into a fourth decade.
However, he said other stores had already started closing.
“Bad rental season you risk going bankrupt. For most music stores, that’s well over half of their business. »
Students are also missing.
“It was a big challenge. I wonder what’s the point of teaching this concept if they don’t have an instrument to play it,” Meagan Jackson said.
Not all CCSD schools could donate real instruments to take home.
In Jackson’s class at Shirley Barber Elementary School, the kids usually share.
“I know some teachers have created a little on-the-go instrument kit with things like egg shakers and stuff.”
Jackson said that in addition to the lack of instruments and difficulty teaching music through a computer screen, his class sizes had doubled to more than 50 children.
“It makes teaching music too academic at their young age,” she said.
“There are so many children that music is their life. They are passionate,” Kessler said.
Jackson said she worried that students who don’t get hands-on experience with the instruments will lose interest.
“I just try to keep singing and stay positive,” Jackson said.
CCSD’s fine arts program is ranked among the best in the country. It is one of the only districts of its size to require music for elementary students.
Jackson said that because of this, she felt a sense of job security, but still worried about funding.