||Student engagement is considered one of the most critical issues in Canadian education today and educators are becoming increasingly alarmed. Students who are bored, disruptive, and disengaged have documented negative impacts on students, schools, and communities. Most importantly, there is potential for them to leave our schools unprepared for a productive and healthy life in society. Arts educators recognize the need for strategies and practices that engage students and parents in schools, particularly for families who live in vulnerable circumstances. An intervention program using music as a means for social transformation and based upon Venezuelan El Sistema orchestral programs is the focus of a research study exploring the role of music for social justice. It is grounded in research evidence showing that participation in quality arts programs is associated with improved academic, personal, and social outcomes for at risk students. A multiphase, participatory action research design is being employed for this longitudinal project consisting of several studies tied to its broad purposes. Overall, a mixed method approach to data collection and analysis is being undertaken and is required to: 1) obtain information on various dimensions of the music intervention; 2) allow for the generation of convergent findings; and 3) select and align methods to accomplish particular tasks within the study as a whole. In this session, findings emerging from attendance data, academic data, and a parent survey which aim to assess impacts of the program on student and parent engagement in two local school sites will be presented.