Santa Barbara Education Foundation, 99.9 KTYD Instrumental in Local Music Education | School zone

Posted on February 1, 2022
| 10:05 a.m.

Since 2003, the Santa Barbara Education Foundation (SBEF) has kept school music programs going by raising funds to pay for instruction and collecting instruments.

The efforts allowed every elementary student in Santa Barbara Unified to learn to play an instrument as part of their school curriculum, a rarity for California school districts.

In recent years, SBEF staff and local music education advocates have taken to the airwaves on 99.9 KTYD to ask for community support.

During last year’s Keep the Beat Instrument Drive, SBEF provided $30,000 in funding and 60 donated instruments, including Indian string instruments, accordions, cellos and a piccolo that will go straight into the hands students in SB Unified music programs.

With so much hanging around the annual event, SBEF will once again join 99.9 KTYD for the entire month of February for the Keep the Beat Instrument Drive. The on-air event will serve as an outreach and celebration for SB Unified student musicians.

“We are always amazed at how our community comes together to support students with the gift of music,” said SBEF Executive Director Margie Yahyavi. “This is a huge victory for our students.

“In addition to the problem-solving and cooperative learning skills gained from playing music, having a creative outlet can be a huge benefit for a child, especially during this difficult time,”

The month-long radio event will feature SB Unified music teachers and local professional musicians taking to the airwaves to rally community support for music education at local public schools.

This year’s guests include George Pendergast of Dishwalla, Dylan Aguilera, music and band director of Santa Barbara High School, and Rick Boller of the Santa Barbara Bowl Foundation.

SBEF will also host a contactless instrument donation site from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Friday in February at its offices, 1330 State St. Instrument donations are also accepted at Nick Rail Music at 2801 De La Vina Street.

Do you have an instrument that collects dust? Donate your used instruments to put them directly into the hands of a student through a local school music program.

For more information about Keep the Beat Instrument Drive, visit or call 805-284-9125.

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