Kids from Wisconsin workshops give music back to Milwaukee youth

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Eli Morris has never taken a music class in his life. 

But that doesn’t mean the 11-year-old wasn’t interested. In his free time, Morris likes to free-style rap with friends in his room. Occasionally, he may even sing a song. 

So, when he saw a poster at Redemption Evangelical Lutheran Church for a Kids from Wisconsin music program, he said “ooh, I can get my music on,” and signed up. 

Morris isn’t unlike many other kids enrolled in Milwaukee’s public schools. Due to budget cuts and shifting priorities, music programs have been gutted, leaving many children — particularly Black youth — without a classroom introduction to the art form. (In 2020, Milwaukee voters approved a referendum which is intended address inequities and which could boost music programming in MPS.)

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