You hear it from the time you start college until you retire. “Here’s how to protect your program” of course I paid attention to the articles, the talks, and the stories..but you never realize how much it hurts until it happens close to home. Now as you know I’ve been out of the classroom for a few years now but when I hear that my old high school. The one I still can see from my office everyday, where the teacher that pushed me into the right direction and still gives me a hug overtime I see her is. Is going to push the program to after school and make major cuts to the program? I had a lump in my throat.
It was heart breaking, maddening, absolutely upsetting.
But you know what? Music Geeks are leaders so lead we shall. I talked to alum like me, heard the stories, the feelings. I even talked to my former Teacher to get the story. The people coming out of the woodwork standing up for this program’s right to stay in the school day is amazing.
Isn’t that what we strive to create while teaching music? Hard working, creative..leaders? It doesn’t take long to figure out how music affects you, how it makes you feel but sometimes it takes a little reflection and a push off the cliff to realize the tools it teachers you.
So the community is taking a stand to let every student in the community have fair access to an instrument. What are we doing?
1.) Writing letters– To the school board, papers, anyone who will listen. Why music is important to us, stories, stats, what ever we can say to change their minds.
2.) Spreading the news – Sharing with friends and family builds the army, social media makes news spread fast.
3.) Standing strong with the program– Sharing their news, the good they are doing. Cheering them on and showing the board that we love the chorus and band. We’re ready to go to the school board meetings when the time comes.
4.) Getting in touch with NAfME– I gotta say, best thing ever. They showed me where to start looking for facts, stats, and stories to back up all of the stories the community is being flooded with about why music is important. They’ve been through this with other districts from all over and know where to get you started.
5.) Staying positive– Even though I want to say and do horrible things you get more flies with honey than vinegar. Helping the school board figure out how to change it rather than yelling will make the difference.