WILLOW GROVE, Pa. (CBS) – Nearly three years after breaking ground, a prominent Philadelphia-area music school will be dedicating its new building in Montgomery County later this week.

Settlement Music School, which has been a part of the local community for more than a century, will dedicate its new location on Thursday.  The new building in Willow Grove offers 29 studios dedicated to educating not only young people but adults as well.

The new branch, which replaces the school’s Jenkintown facility, will create 25 fulltime jobs and offer its 320-seat performance space (below) for community use.

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wgb recital hall 01 Settlement Music School To Dedicate New Willow Grove Branch On Thursday

Settlement Music School raised $25 million recently, and $8 million is being used for the new building on Davisville Road in Willow Grove.  Executive director Helen Eaton says they will use part of the remaining money for scholarships and financial aid.

“This has been a core part of our mission since the founding of the school,” Eaton says.  “And it’s very important to convey to the public that we do make our programs affordable — that no one is turned away because they can’t afford.”

While many music programs in schools are being cut, Eaton points out, Settlement provides a vital service for students.

“It really opens up their minds and helps them do better in school,” she told KYW Newsradio. “And parents are looking for opportunities all the time to get them involved in the arts.”

The school was founded in 1908 and now has six locations in the Philadelphia area.

Reported by Brad Segall, KYW Newsradio 1060.

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