students. 6. The high school instrumental directors will choose an appropriate selection and score a recorder part to feature the elementary school students on that selection in the Spring Concert. This event is also geared toward having the students view themselves as high school instrumental students and for the parents to see their children as high school instrumental students performing right on the high school stage.

7. The elementary and middle schools teachers will invite the high school teachers to conduct a piece on one of their school concerts.

8. The high school principals will work with the middle school principals to facilitate scheduling so that recurring visits become part of the regular teaching assignment.

9. The high school parent booster organization will host the middle school parent organization for a chili/spaghetti supper to visit with them about the many benefits of participating in the high school program. Brief entertainment will be provided by the high school students at every meeting. Several high school students will also be invited to speak to the middle school parents about the impact the high school program has had on them personally.

10. The high school students will write congratulatory notes to the middle school and elementary students as appropriate to commend them on an extraordinary performance, being chosen for something special, etc. This activity is to develop a “Big Brother/Big Sister” relationship with the younger students.

11. The high school students will attend the concerts given by the programs that they participated in before coming to the high school. After the concert, they will provide positive feedback to the students of that program via written notes (see #10) or emails to the director to be read aloud to the students during class.

12. The principal of one of the

middle/elementary schools will be invited to provide remarks at one of the concerts being held at the high school and vice versa. Elementary/middle school parents will gain a sense of confidence in the high school program when they see the high school principal speaking so favorably about it at this

32 February/March 2019

event. Conversely, the high school parents will be so impressed that the elementary/middle school principal still cares enough about their children to the degree that he would make the time to speak at the high school concert. In the big picture, these types of “principal exchange” activities reinforce the idea that the accepted, standard procedure is for students to continue in music throughout their school years.

Additional ideas that could be implemented might also include the following.

13. The high school students will come up with an idea for a comprehensive video about their program to be posted on the department’s website. The goal is to “tell the story” about their program in a way that is appealing to fellow students.

First Performance for Band/Orchestra Demonstration Concert in the first six or seven weeks of the first year of study for the beginning instrumental students. This mini-concert will close with a high-spirited performance from the high school ensemble. The school principal will be invited to read the provided narrations. More information on how to order a copy is available at or through your local music dealer.

14. The beginning band teachers will begin using

15. Appropriately selected high school students will provide lessons to beginner/intermediate, elementary/middle school students at a Summer Music Camp to be held at the high school during the first week (or two) after the close of school. This will pair younger students with older students in a supervised setting which could motivate the younger musicians to practice over the summer. It also provides another opportunity for the high school students to serve as role models. In addition, this experience could enlighten the high school students to the possibility of becoming a music educator.

There is still a long way to go, but this exceptional music education team in the School District of Pickens County is showing incredible dedication and fortitude in moving forward with their message—to improve the quality of the lives of the students and the community. They have already had a second professional development day to continue working on their plan. It will take a great deal of endurance, determination, and even courage over the long term, but the outcome of this game plan are already starting to have a considerable impact. The team photo shown below speaks volumes!!! GO TEAM!

So much was accomplished in that one day! The team capitalized on the model from the business world of identifying what it was that they, as one, unified organization, agreed was their true Mission. We even spoke about adding a “tag line” or creating a slogan to take their essence a step further. Based upon their self-identified goal, some possible tag lines could include, “Creating a more fulfilling future for our students” or “Creating harmony in our community.”

When the Las Vegas Convention and Visitor’s Authority created the slogan, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” they created a masterpiece! Everyone knows it and in fact, all one has to say is, “What happens in Vegas. . .” and the answer pops right into your head. So, how can an example like this be used as a slogan for our music departments? One might consider, “What happens in music. . . lasts for a lifetime.”

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