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Thanks for supporting music in the schools | Letter

June 11, 2013 · Updated 10:15 AM

Last Thursday’s Orcas High School spring concert was a triumph for its participating music students, their teachers Pamela Wright and Martin Lund, the audience and for all community school music supporters. It was an evening of exciting, joyful and creative music.

Twenty years ago there was no music program at Orcas School. This concert showed us all what the culminating result of a music program that begins in our preschools and continues sequentially throughout elementary, middle and high schools can be. This success has been made possible through the dedication and pursuit of excellence of our school and community organizations and individuals including:

Our music teachers, committed students and their parents, School Board and Administrators Barbara Kline and Kyle Freeman, the community Mentors in instrumental classes, the Music Advocacy Group, Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival and countless donors to MAG and the School Music Matters Fund and all community members who have supported School Benefit Concerts and school music in many ways over the years.

Community support of the School Music Program has never been more important than it is now. Although we have reached a rewarding and exciting point, we must continue our strong support to sustain the remarkable level achieved so far and to move forward in providing opportunities in music education which will enable all students to fulfill their musical potential.

We face the immediate challenge of filling the position for an instrumental music teacher to continue the creative and exciting band program begun by retiring music teacher Martin Lund.

Challenges which must be faced and met in the next few years by the school board, administrators, community groups and individuals who support school music include:

The challenge of offering music classes during the school day, which will provide music opportunities for all middle and high school students.

The challenge of assuring continued growth of our music program to include full-time music positions, which will attract and keep the best music teachers available.

Thanks to each one of you for all you’ve done to build and sustain the music program at Orcas School.  We must continue to make our voices heard in support of school music! “SCHOOL MUSIC MATTERS!”

Catherine Pederson

Music Advocacy Group President


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