I know the counter-argument for this one. That colleges or schools that matter don't actually look at your art and music grades. Perhaps. Unless you actually want to become an artist or musician. English, science, math, and social studies are very important classes to have, that's why the're required and are called 'core classes'. However, music and art help stimulate the brain. I know for fact, because I've been taking band for four years, that music can help during tests and other classes. The reason is, humans find pleasure in music. Our minds crave sound and rhythm, which is critical to the brain. Scientists have actually found links between science and music, and in the tests, there is undeniable evidence that music is a core learning skill just as well as math or English.
Art is another stimulation to the mind. This is through expressiveness of emotion and feeling. If you're trapped inside four core classes every day, why not express those feeling through the use of art? I took art in eighth grade, and it changed my entire viewpoint on the importance of art in general, and my knowledge of history, which helped me out a little bit in social studies as well. I think overall, if student were more open to the ideas of expressing themselves and creating new things, we'd actually require schools to have music and art classes.
Music and Art should be a part of our daily classes because it is important to build creative skills in the child. Apart from studies, they also play a vital role in enhancing one's personality. And what if someone doesn't have any interest in studies? Then these all activities help the person to outshine...
As a music educator who has worked in all manner of school settings, I can say without a doubt that requiring art, and especially music, leads to more problems than most institutions are aware of. I can't speak for directly for art as I have no experience in the classroom for that, but music I can.
When it comes to middle school music most schools will offer: band, choir, and if you are lucky a general music class. What makes these classes unique is that they act much in the same as a sports team: it's a team effort. You may play the flute, be really good at it, and strive for excellence, but then you have another student (and this is the case with many middle school students) who could care less about music in a band/choir setting and doesn't put in any effort. The problem here is that the students who are putting forth the effort actually have their education stunted because it's a group effort, not an individual one like math or science where your learning is wholly dependent on your willingness to learn and not on the other students in the classroom who don't want to learn. Mandating music is detrimental for those who want to learn and quite frankly a waste of time for those who don't.
With art this is much less the case because it goes back to the more self-oriented learning. Very few art classes I have seen involve a level of cooperative involvement. And again, I can't speak for art as it is not where my experience lies, but I say with my own opinion that forcing students to take art doesn't create a life-long interest in the arts. Allow students who want to take it, take it, and those who don't, allow them to express their interests with other elective options.
When it's all said and done, schools should not require music/arts in middle school, but instead offer these as electives for the students who actually feel passionate about them.
In middle school, I was in both art and band and I am still an avid musician, playing both marching band and Drum set in my free time.
Music and art are two very important subjects to me, however I feel that they should not be required. My reason for believing so is that not everyone wants to be in music or art and that should be respected, as many students aren't artistically or musically inclined. Those students shouldn't be obligated to take a class that they'd likely never use in life and won't benefit from.
Another thing I should mention is that in my school, the artistic students and academic students ratio to about half and half. If, say, art was required, the students who actually want the art class may not be able to join due to a packed class filled with students who don't want to be in that class but are obligated to.
I hope I've made sense.
They want your maths, English and science grades. I don't mean to say that music and art are unimportant, but in order to get a decent job, you need your maths, English and science. No that is is not possible to have a job without them but it will be a whole lot more difficult. Now don't get me wrong. I love music. In fact, i am a musician: I sing and I play the piano and formerly the violin, but to be honest, art and music are only important if you are thinking of a career that requires it. Think about it; if you have dreams of being a scientist, would you waste your time taking art and music when it is not essential to what you want to do? Of course not! If you had a dream of being a professional musician or artist, would you take these subjects? Hopefully yes because they're essential to your career path. However, music and art should not be compulsory as companies will not care about your music and art grade (unless it is a creative business of course). They will be looking for you maths, English and science.
I personally go to a tuition-like school where we just learn the main subjects of the IGCSE, and we don't have classes for art or music at all. This way we focus more on the main subjects while those who don't have much interest in music or arts don't need to invest time in that. We can, however, take up lessons or learn from Youtube ourselves, if we want and have the passion. Simply put, if you have the passion, having no art or music lessons at school will not stop you from learning it. I'd say middle school can have these lessons, but it shouldn't be an obligation.