Florida Music Director - April 2024

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A Holistic Approach to Life as a Young Teacher

Ensemble Culture & Rehearsals: Back to Basics

PLUS: Multicultural Network SummerWorkshop


Are there jobs for music teachers in Florida? A RESOUNDING YES!!

Music teaching is an incredible career.

We are responding to the need for qualified music teachers for Florida students by finding resources and solutions to the immediate, short-term, and longer-term challenges facing the music educator workforce, working to retain, shepherd, and recruit the next generation of music educators in Florida.

Become a music teacher in Florida!



April 2024 3 Executive Director Florida Music Education Association Kathleen D. Sanz, PhD Hinckley Center for Fine Arts Education 402 Office Plaza Tallahassee, FL 32301 (850) 878-6844 or (800) 301-3632 (kdsanz@fmea.org) Editor-in-Chief Kelly Miller, DMA University of Central Florida 12488 Centaurus Blvd. Orlando, FL 32816-8009 (407) 823-4545 (kelly.miller@ucf.edu) Editorial Committee Terice Allen (850) 245-8700, Tallahassee (tallen1962@hotmail.com) Judy Arthur, PhD Florida State University, KMU 222 (850) 644-3005 (jrarthur@fsu.edu) William Bauer, PhD University of Florida, Gainesville (352) 273-3182; (wbauer@ufl.edu)
Darrow, PhD College of Music, FSU, Tallahassee (850) 645-1438; (aadarrow@fsu.edu)
Reynolds (jeannewrey@gmail.com)
K. Southall, PhD Indian River State College, Fort Pierce (772) 462-7810; (johnsouthall@fmea.org) Advertising Sales Valeria Anderson (val@fmea.org) 402 Office Plaza Tallahassee, FL 32301 (850) 878-6844 Official FMEA and FMD Photographers Bob O’Lary Amanda Crawford Art Director & Production Manager Lori Danello Roberts LDR Design Inc. (lori@flmusiced.org) Circulation & Copy Manager Valeria Anderson, (800) 301-3632 Copy Editor Susan Trainor C ontents April 2024 Volume 77 • Number 7 FEATURES DEPARTMENTS CONFERENCE President’s Message 4 Advertiser Index 5 Advocacy Report 6 Immediate Impact 8 2023-2024 FMEA Donors 22 Component News 24 FMEA Multicultural Network Summer Workshop ................. 11 FSMA Professional Development ........ 12 June M. Hinckley Music Education Scholarship ........... 13 Ensemble Culture & Rehearsals: Back to Basics ..................... 14 A Holistic Approach to Life as a Young Teacher ................. 18 Research Puzzles 30 Committee Reports 32 Corporate Partners 36 Academic Partners 38 Executive Director’s Notes 40 Officers and Directors 41

President’s Message

Music Education Begins with ME! MEntality

am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.”

This is one of my all-time favorite quotes! It speaks of an attitude, an orientation, a MEntality we can choose to take toward life, with all of its joys and challenges. Another word for our values, philosophy, and outlook toward life is mindset

Growth mindset is a term you may have heard. But what does it really mean? In a nutshell, it means you thrive on challenges and you see setbacks or failures as opportunities for growth and development. Individuals and organizations that operate from a growth mindset persevere in the face of frustration and difficulty and learn from failure. They believe in their capacity to be successful at anything, and they learn and draw inspiration from the successes of others.

The opposite is a fixed mindset, in which the individual or organization believes they possess a specific set of talents and abilities and there are some things they are just not good at—and may never be. They have an aversion to challenge and a tendency to get frustrated and give up easily. They have a constant need for affirmation and feel threatened by the success of others. Have you ever

encountered a student with a fixed mindset? A colleague?

An organization? A reflection in the mirror? I know I have encountered a fixed mindset in all of the above at one time or another!

The good news is our MEntality is a choice, and a continual one at that. We are not stuck in a fixed mindset, nor are we able to maintain a growth mindset without constant intention and practice. Think of the students you have worked with over the years who have wanted to give up when there was difficulty achieving some bit of instrumental or vocal technique, or when they were unsuccessful with a particular audition. You undoubtedly coached and encouraged them to continue working hard and learning from their disappointments on their personal journey toward mastery and better musicianship.

How ironic it is that we, who coach our students to learn from their setbacks and believe in their ability to ultimately succeed, sometimes adopt a fixed mindset ourselves! When we encounter resistance or opposition from students, parents, administrators, or the educational climate around us, do we give up and begin looking for another school? Another state? Another career? If our ensembles don’t earn the MPA rating, performance invitation, or accolade we seek, do we learn and grow from the experience and feedback? Or do we want to give up or even lash out in anger due to feeling insecure, threatened, or jealous of what we perceive as the relative success of others compared to us?

We all deal with these feelings from time to time, myself included. Our MEntality determines how we

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IMAGE SOURCE: mylearningtools.org “

respond to these emotions. Instead of allowing a fixed mindset to brand you or your efforts an unredeemable failure, I encourage you to lean into a growth mindset so adversities become opportunities to learn and persevere.

I’m so proud of the members of the FMEA Board of Directors and CFAE staff for the growth mindset they are applying to the association’s programs and services. In addition to this year’s improvements to our conference infrastructure and experience, we dramatically increased our advocacy efforts during the 2024 Legislative Session, introduced the Immediate Impact Spotlights, and recently unveiled the new FMEA podcast. Over the past couple of months, students and teachers had the opportunity to learn and grow as musicians from the FMEA Steel Drum Festival and the revived FMEA Guitar Festivals (this year at four sites, instead of one). In May, we will also unveil the new and improved FMEA Crossover Festivals, expanded from one to five university campuses all over Florida. And this summer, we are looking forward to the debut of the reimagined FMEA Emerging Leaders Program, the return of the FMEA Multicultural Network Summer Workshop, and the continued essential work of the Teach Music Florida Coalition. These programs are in addition to the amazing events and support offered to members throughout the year by our component associations and their leaders.

A fixed mindset inhibits progress. As individuals, and as an association, we must work to adopt a growth mindset. To be sure, we will continue to encounter challenges along the way, but we will learn, persevere, and ultimately achieve new heights with this MEntality!

2024-25 FMEA Membership:

You are eligible for membership in the Florida Music Education Association if you are an individual engaged in the teaching, supervision, or administration of music in elementary and secondary schools, colleges, or universities within the state. Visit FMEA.org/membership to learn more about the benefits of active membership.


Direct correspondence regarding subscriptions to: Hinckley Center for Fine Arts Education 402 Office Plaza, Tallahassee, FL, 32301-2757

Subscription cost included in FMEA membership dues ($9); libraries, educational institutions, and all others within the United States: $27 plus 7.5% sales tax.


The circulation of the Florida Music Director is 4,500 educators. Published eight times annually by The Florida Music Education Association, Hinckley Center for Fine Arts Education: 402 Office Plaza, Tallahassee, FL 32301-2757.

FMEA reserves the right to approve any application for appearance and to edit all materials proposed for distribution. Permission is granted to all FMEA members to reprint articles from the Florida Music Director for non-commercial, educational purposes. Non-members may request permission from the FMEA office.


Article and art submissions are always considered and should be submitted on or before the 1st of the month, one month prior to the publication issue to: Kelly Miller, DMA, kelly.miller@ucf.edu.

All articles must be provided in digital format (e.g., Microsoft Word). All applicable fonts and images must be provided. Images must be at least 300 dpi resolution at 100% of the size. All submissions must be accompanied by a proof (color, if applicable). Ads may be submitted via email to val@fmea.org

Advertiser Index

The Florida Music Director is made possible by the participation of the following businesses whose advertisements appear in this issue. They make it possible to provide you with a high-quality publication, and we gratefully acknowledge their support of our mission. We hope you will take special notice of these advertisements and consider the products and services offered. It is another important way you can support your professional association and the enhancement of Florida music education.

The publisher does not endorse any particular company, product, or service. The Florida Music Education Association (FMEA) is not responsible for the content of any advertisement and reserves the right to accept or refuse any advertisement submitted for publication. Information for advertisers (rate card, insertion orders, graphics requirements, etc.) can be found at FMEAMediaKit. org Florida Music Director reserves the right to refuse any ad not prepared to the correct specifications OR to rework the ad as needed with fees applied.


Florida Music Education Association

April 2024 5
Jason P. Locker President Florida Music Education Association
Florida International University.............................................................................. 9 The advertisers in BOLD provide additional support to FMEA members through membership in the Florida Corporate and Academic Partners (FCAP) program. FCAP partners deserve your special recognition and attention.


Exhilaration and Exhaustion

It’sApril and there is much to celebrate and much to do. We are juggling the past, present, and future. It is the time of year when we can finally reflect on student growth and celebrate past performances. Yet we are very busy in the present, teaching and preparing for end-ofyear events. We are also focused on planning for the next school year (the future) to ensure we are providing quality, comprehensive music education, just as our FMEA mission statement inspires us to do. It is an exhilarating and exhausting time of year.

April advocacy efforts are no different. We too are juggling the past, present, and future.


Seal of Fine Arts

We were thrilled with the passage of our Seal of Fine Arts legislation. As discussed in the February/March column, the legislation passed all committees and the full House and Senate by unanimous votes. This success represents the past four years of effort of the Advocacy Committee, FMEA staff, and FMEA members.

Collegiate Advocacy Day

We had a tremendously successful Collegiate Advocacy Day on February 6. Thanks to all the collegiate members who attended. We owe a debt of gratitude to Florida NAfME Collegiate Advocacy Chair Megan Rodriguez, President Megan Robichaud, and F lorida NAfME Collegiate Advisor Dr. Mark Belfast for their inspired leadership. Thanks also to Florida NAfME Collegiate Past President Colin Urbina who helped get these in-person legislative visits up and running last year after the virtual visits during Covid. FMEA staff worked tirelessly to ensure this day was successful. We were very fortunate that FMEA President Jason Locker and FMEA PresidentElect Scott Evans were able to join us for these visits. Collegiate Advocacy Day clearly had a positive effect on getting our Seal of Fine Arts passed this year.


Seal of Fine Arts Roll Out

The Seal of Fine Arts is on its way to the governor for his signature. We are currently collecting a small number of targeted letters to share with the governor.

Thanks to Florida Music Supervision Association President Chris Burns and performing and visual arts supervisors throughout the state who are working on a plan to ensure the Seal of Fine Arts will have a smooth roll out for schools and school districts. As one visual arts leader put it, “Just add water.”

Thank You Letters

If you have not yet written your legislator to thank them for their support, NOW is the time! This is important. All the information you need to complete this task is on our website, FMEA.org/advocacy, including an easy way to find your legislators. While it may no longer be Music in Our Schools Month, it is always a good time to thank your legislator. If your legislator was a co-sponsor of the bill, thank them for not only passing the bill but also for co-sponsoring it.

w Senate Bill 694

Sponsor Perry;

Co-Sponsors: Rouson, Burgess, Stewart, Torres

w House Bill 523

Sponsors Canady and Black;

Co-Sponsors: Amesty, Arrington, Baker, Bankson, Basabe, Bell, Daniels, Eskamani, Esposito, Franklin, Garcia, Gossett-Seidman, Harris, Hart, Plakon, Plasencia, Smith, Valdés, Woodson


Arts Data Project

The Seal of Fine Arts was always intended to be a first step toward greater recognition for arts education. Ensuring a successful implementation as well as

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Advocacy Report

data collection and analysis related to students who earn the Seal will be critical. We continue to advocate for the funding and inclusion of Florida in the Arts Education Data Project Here is a good state example

YOUR Advocacy Next Steps

Every FMEA member should create a personal advocacy action plan. Andrew Burk, St. Johns County 2023 Teacher of the Year and a middle school band director, put together a resource for busy teachers. It’s a good way to get started on your planning. The success of your program may be more heavily influenced by your assistant principal, guidance staff, or bookkeeper rather than a school board member or state legislator. As a result, your personal action plan may be focused on school personnel rather than elected officials. That’s perfectly fine and appropriate. The action steps are similar and can be adapted.

At this exhausting, exhilarating time of year where past, present, and future collide, advocacy may be at the bottom of your to-do list. That is a strategic mistake and counterproductive. Attention to advocacy will make your program stronger and will lighten your load by building a support network. Fortunately, there are outstanding advocacy resources right at your fingertips. A few are listed below. If you make advocacy a priority, there will be more days of exhilaration and fewer days of exhaustion. Promise.


• Florida Music Education Association Advocacy


• National Association for Music Education Advocacy Resources

» https://nafme.org/advocacy/advocacyresource-center/

» https://nafme.org/wp-content/ uploads/2023/05/Local-AdvocacyAction-Plan-2022.pdf

• League of American Orchestra Advocacy

https://americanorchestras.org/ ten-tips-for-launching-your-music-education-advocacy-effort/

• Save the Music Foundation

https://www.savethemusic.org/resources/ local-advocacy-action-plans/

• More specifically 5 Things You Can Do – Music Educator Edition


• Americans for the Arts


April 2024 7
Jeanne W. Reynolds Chairperson Advocacy Committee Jeanne W. Reynolds Jason Locker, Caitlin Magennis (student), Dr. Kathy Sanz, Rep. Anna Eskamani, Megan Rodriguez (student), and Scott Evans celebrate Collegiate Advocacy Day. PHOTO: Bob O’Leary

FMEA “Immediate Impact” Music Educator Spotlight

In this new feature, FMEA seeks to spotlight the outstanding work and accomplishments of music educators in the earlier stages of their teaching careers. These educators are making an immediate impact on their schools, communities, and students.


Chorus Director

Howard Middle School

Marion County

Mrs. Christie, now in her third year leading the chorus at Howard Middle School, has revitalized the program that faced challenges during the pandemic. She has guided students to impressive achievements, including performances at All-State, the Marion All-County Choir Festival, and various local events. Under her guidance, student retention has consistently improved, and Mrs. Christie is grateful for the program’s remarkable progress. She is currently pursuing the MME from Florida State University with the goal of continuous improvement as an educator so she can better impact the school and community.

Thank you, HAYLEY, for making an immediate impact on your students, community, and music education in Florida!


Please submit the FMEA “Immediate Impact” Music Educator Spotlight form and materials for yourself or a colleague who exemplifies the criteria for educators making an immediate impact on their schools, communities, and students. TO

VICTORIA SENKO Orchestra Director

Deltona Middle School

Volusia County

Ms. Senko is the orchestra director at Deltona Middle School, where she showcases her passion for music education and an impressive background as a violinist. Over the past two school years, she has overseen a remarkable transformation, most evident by tripling the enrollment in the orchestra program. Ms. Senko’s dedication to the field of music education is evident through her involvement in prestigious programs like the FMEA Emerging Leaders program and the Ohio State String Teachers summer workshops. She has also served as chair for the Volusia All-County orchestra showcase and actively participated in the American String Teachers Association conferences. As a professional violinist, Victoria has graced multiple professional orchestras, and she has made it a personal mission to showcase her students’ talents within the community. Victoria Senko is undeniably an invaluable asset to Volusia County Schools and a driving force behind the success of our Florida Music Education Association programs. Her commitment to nurturing young musicians is truly inspiring.

Thank you, VICTORIA , for making an immediate impact on your students, community, and music education in Florida!

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Labelle High School

Hendry County

Mr. Burden is in his third year as the band director at LaBelle High School in Hendry County. Since taking over the program at LaBelle in 2021, he has doubled the number of students enrolled in LaBelle High School’s band program, improved upon ratings received at MPA events, created a second concert band, organized a parent support group, created new opportunities for his students including the establishment of a Winter Guard, and hosted a marching band festival at LaBelle for the first time. Under Mr. Burden’s leadership, students at LaBelle

April 2024 9
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2024 YAMAHA “40 UNDER 40”


In 2021, Yamaha launched the “40 Under 40” music education advocacy program to honor educators who are making a difference in growing and strengthening their music programs. Now, we celebrate the 2024 group of remarkable educators who bring innovation and passion into their classrooms. We celebrate Florida’s own Charlene Cannon for being selected into the 2024 Class.

Changing jobs is always stressful, but moving to a brand-new school is particularly daunting. From day one, Horizon High School Band Director Charlene Cannon focused on building a culture of teamwork and collaboration between all sections to ensure students would be positive and helpful to one another.

“Our first activity at our first band camp was determining what we would say when the marching band was called to attention because I wanted to make sure all students felt included as part of establishing the look and vibe of our marching band, The Sound of Horizon,” she said. “I have a frame in my office with pictures from day one and day 10 of this first band camp. The difference in camaraderie and connectedness amongst the students is evident. These photos drive me every day to continue my work on student culture and connection to ensure that everyone has a positive experience in my classroom.”

At band camp, there were 36 students. By the second week of school, the number of students almost doubled to 68. Since then, Cannon’s program has experienced a steady growth. “I write my own marching band drill formations each year, and I did a lot of re-writing that first year to make sure that everyone who joined would be included no matter when they signed up for the band program,” she explained.

Cannon was in a unique situation when she started at Horizon High School because a middle school opened on the high school campus at the same time, and she also served as the band director there for a year. She encouraged teamwork and friendship among the middle schoolers, which they carried with them when they entered high school.

For students with no prior musical experience, Cannon started a beginning band class this year to ensure there was an entry-level option. “This class is taught the same way as the other classes, just

at a different pace. By focusing on their individual fundamentals, we’ve made remarkable progress in a short amount of time,” she said.

Cannon encourages her band students to participate in other activities. “I am so proud that my students are also involved in football, cheerleading, golf, cross country, track and field, basketball, volleyball, various clubs and honor societies, tutoring, and more,” she said. “I believe that participating in other activities provides high school students the chance to be well-rounded and the mindset to always try new things.”

When Horizon opened, Cannon worked with athletics to determine a policy for resolving conflicts between sports and performing arts. “I’m fortunate to have colleagues who understand the importance of supporting these multi-talented, busy students. The band and color guard students have become excellent advocates of time management and responsibility for their schedules,” she said.

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This one-day professional development workshop is set up to offer information, insight, and inspiration to music educators as they enter the summer planning months. Although getting your rest and quality family and friend time is a top priority during the summer, it is never too early to plan for the upcoming year. Our goal is for teachers to analyze what you are doing in your program and what steps need to be taken to take your program (and you) to the next level. Regardless of how long we have been teaching, there is always room to grow and learn new strategies and best practices for enhancing the music education experience for ALL Florida students.


We are now accepting proposals and performance applications for the MCN Summer Workshop.


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Unlocking the Potential Empowering Music Educators Through Leadership QUICK FACTS

The state and district leadership of our component associations (FBA, FOA, and FVA) aims to provide excellent stewarding of existing music programs and to champion better opportunities for aspiring musicians. This requires leaders to be efficient organizers of persons, resources, and projects, in addition to planning paths to fulfill the vision of a better tomorrow for music education in Florida. This professional development opportunity will provide communication training, team building, scenario-based problem solving, implications of the latest developments in technology, guidance on laws relating to music education, and other skills identified by participants as a need to find success as a leader in Florida.

The training is designed in partnership with the FSMA component organizations: Florida Bandmasters Association, Florida Orchestra Association, and Florida Vocal Association. Approximately 16 to 20 participants will be selected through an application process. FSMA will cover hotel expenses and meals during the training.

July 7-10, 2024

Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld

Orlando, Florida

Application Deadline: April 1, 2024

Schedule Overview (subject to change)


Orientation will begin at 4 pm, followed by dinner together and possibly an evening activity.

Monday and Tuesday:

Full days of sessions and activities, with social activities in the evenings. Meals provided.


Final session will conclude by 11 am.

More details will be forthcoming.

Eligibility Note

Because FSMA and its component organizations FBA, FOA, and FVA work exclusively with secondary music teachers (grades 6–12), this program is not open to elementary school teachers. We highly recommend that elementary teachers interested in this leadership training sign up for the FMEA Summer Institute.

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June M. Hinckley Music Education Scholarship

The Florida Music Education Association (FMEA) is soliciting scholarship applications for the June M. Hinckley Music Education Scholarship. The association will award $1,000 scholarships to selected 2023-24 graduating high school students who were accepted to a Florida all-state ensemble and who intend to major in music education at a Florida college or university.

How to Apply: Fill out the online application. As part of the online process, you will be asked to upload these files:

w Essay: Answer both of the following questions in a typed response of approximately 1,200 words: (1) Why do you wish to become a music educator? (2) Why should music be available to all students? Save it as a Microsoft Word (.docx) or PDF (.pdf) file.

w Three Letters of Recommendation signed and scanned as PDF files.

w High-Quality Headshot Photograph such as your senior photo or similar. This will be published in the Florida Music Director magazine if you are one of the scholarship winners.

An OFFICIAL COPY of your transcript (must remain sealed) must be sent to the following address:

June M. Hinckley Music Education Scholarship

Attn: Val Anderson 402 Office Plaza

Tallahassee, FL 32301 Postmark Deadline: April 19, 2024

Applications will be reviewed by a representative committee of teachers, administrators, and music educators convened by FMEA. Notification will be made by May 30, 2024. Monies awarded will be distributed to the appropriate college or university once the student is enrolled.

About June M. Hinckley

As arts education specialist for the Florida Department of Education, June Hinckley led the development of the Sunshine State Standards for the Arts, which are based on the National Arts Standards and were adopted by the Florida State Board of Education in 1996. Hinckley assisted schools and school districts with the implementation of the arts standards and with connecting the arts with the state accountability and testing program, and she served as a liaison among the various K-12 arts education groups, higher education, and community arts organizations. She was a founding organizer of the Arts for a Complete Education project, which has coalesced the various community, industry, and school arts organizations in Florida to work cooperatively and proactively to improve the quality and quantity of arts programs throughout the state.

April 2024 13

“What infuses life to cold print is imagination, creativity, and beauty.”

Ensemble Culture

Back to Basics

IIn the preceding quote, composer Warren Benson provides three exceptional goals to strive for in our music-making that also relate to the overall environment/culture of our programs. We hear the word culture used with great frequency today especially in sports media, for example, when they are referring to various teams, their front offices, organizations, etc. They will reference how a certain head coach came in and changed the culture of a team or how a player affected the culture of the locker room and so forth.

I think culture also fits when talking about our musical classrooms and band programs. The most logical place to start when addressing the culture of our programs is in our rehearsals. Rehearsals are the teacher’s performances, not just the concerts. Because of this, I usually find myself overthinking the rehearsal process in general. Maybe I am not alone in this. Perhaps it is because our concern for our students and the type of experience and education they receive daily never leaves us. Nothing magical happens by putting on the performance attire and showing up to the concert. With the sacred time and space of the

rehearsal being paramount in importance to our bands, I seem to, upon reflection, return to a few basic concepts to help ensure the culture, content, and pacing are right at every level. I would like to offer them here. When those three elements are healthy, everything else seems to fall into place seamlessly.

1. Allow the students to fail to begin again more intelligently. I ask groups to make great mistakes with big sounds, and especially upon first collective ensemble readings with younger and less advanced groups. You must have a physical sound to work with in the rehearsal. There can be none of what I call “mezzo fuzziness” simply because they are sight-reading. As Mahoney (2010) mentions, tenor saxophonist Ben Webster said to music mogul Quincy Jones: “You can’t get an A if you’re afraid of an F so take a lot of chances.” That is appropriate for this point. An old teacher of mine used to say we should permit them to sound bad before they can sound good. It is refined over time.

continued on page 16

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& Rehearsals

continued on page 36

Ensemble Culture & Rehearsals

continued from page 14

2. Create an environment/culture that celebrates art holistically. Ask yourself what things are artistically and musically tangible in your classroom that engage the students from the second they enter the room. You control this. What is the first thing they hear or see when they enter your classroom? When I taught public school, I always had the finest recordings of great music playing when students entered the space as well as the names of the artists performing, the name of the work and composer, and a musical question from the previous rehearsal posted where the students could easily see it all. We must plant seeds of knowledge and inspiration without saying a word sometimes.

3. Through score study and expectations, build an environment/culture where the students come to the ensemble rehearsals knowing their parts in advance to then be able to learn and be informed by others’ parts. This arrangement requires that a relationship of trust be established with your students. And with that, try never to learn your score with them at each rehearsal or stay just one rehearsal ahead of them. If you do, your head will be buried in the score and your rehearsal energy will always be nervous and frenetic. Classroom management will also be put in jeopardy. That approach is counter to a relaxed, yet focused environment/culture.

4. To piggyback off the last statement about being informed by others’ parts, help students become aware that they are never resting in the production of sonic art. They may be tacet in certain scenarios, but they should always be listening intently to what is going on around them, even when their notation says to rest. They must know that during those rests, there may also be a peer playing a solo or another section playing a countermelody that might then be complemented by their part in a subsequent phrase.

5. The contributions of the percussion section are often compromised due to insufficient technique, a lack of players, a lack of instruments, or a lack of quality control of those instruments. I realize that smaller programs are often hamstrung by less funding, personnel, and ability. At any level, you can choose repertoire strategically and sensitively that highlights and places the strengths and possibilities of the students at the forefront while embracing pragmatism.

5a. On the note of repertoire, it is not within the scope of this writing to address programming fully, but allow me to offer a few thoughts. When the culture, content, and pacing are right, magic can happen in our rehearsals. This is tied directly to the repertoire we choose to share and explore with our students. In the fourth point above, I dis-

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cussed the students being engaged and informed by the music happening around them even when they are tacet. This can only happen when the repertoire we choose presents opportunities for elements such as soloistic expression or chamber/ small ensemble playing within the context of the larger group dynamic. If all our pieces incorporate homophonic textures and keep everyone bound to a safe method of scoring, then we have musicians hiding often. Every student must be accountable for every sound made. It is that important. You can stress this idea through the music if what you select promotes said accountability. The breadth of our musical programs often sets the tone of our band culture as well. Is your programming formulaic and perhaps patterned after what has worked before? Or a product of the adage “the kids love it”? If so, perhaps embracing the concept of comprehensive musicianship will help promote more thoughtful choices given to individual concert programs.

If we consider areas such as key center, period, diversity, tempo, style, orchestration, etc., then perhaps we can come closer to having a more robust and fertile ground from which to harvest the seeds we plant artistically through repertoire choice.

6. With younger groups, adjust the ensemble seating so the listening environment changes for them. This is especially useful in concert festival music preparation where students can frankly lose focus when working on the same three pieces for months at a time. At any given rehearsal, have a tuba unexpectedly placed next to a flute or a clarinet. Place a percussionist next to a saxophone, etc.

7. Try not to let them wait to be expressive. If the students are allowed to learn notes and rhythms first without expressing anything, then I believe it is often too late to add musicality after the fact. You will hear students and some teachers often embrace the idea of “just let me get the notes and rhythms down first.” Again, upon the first reading of new music, encourage great mistakes, and that creates an environment/ culture that compels them to be vulnerable. Joy, innovation, and creativity are only possible when we are vulnerable.

8. Use language that is musical and reinforces musical ideas and concepts. Instead of saying the dynamic is “2 Fs,” for example, say the Italian name in question.

This seems simple and pedestrian, but I hear it too often and the excuse is that it is an effort to save time. Inspire students with this small detail and they will be smarter for it. You also hear directors say just ask them to play faster, slower, louder, and softer in your feedback, and not incorporate adjectives, descriptors, or any emotional narrative. Yes, and you can also have a group that does not expand their thinking, plays just the ink, is shapeless and void of form, focuses only on the measurable/tangible elements of music-making, and expresses nothing sonically.

9. Teach students to embrace the philosophy that music-making should be egoless. Teach them to focus more on what they can contribute to the ensemble/ environment/culture rather than what they get out of the experience personally. Teach them to always serve the music and not themselves.

10. Set up an environment/culture where your rehearsal planning, infrastructure, logistics, classroom, etc., are so precise with every possible variable accounted for in advance that underachieving is simply the student’s own choice. Ensure that the experience of making music is easily within reach of all students if they simply follow the rules and serve the music. They then have no choice but to succeed.

In closing, a room full of talented students will only get you so far. Talent alone does not strengthen the culture. If they are talented but incorrigible in behavior, personality, and humanness, you cannot ride the wave of their technical abilities very long. But if the ethic of hard work by committed players and warm humans is inserted and practiced in our bands, we can collectively serve our art in the highest manner. And remember, it is the students who do all the hard work all the time that will inevitably catch on and progress to greater achievements.


Mahoney, Lesley. (2010, May 31). Quincy Jones: Forget the Hype. Berklee. https://www.berklee.edu/news/1990/quincy-jonesforget-the-hype

Hayes Bunch is the director of bands at Young Harris College (Ga.). Dr. Bunch holds the DMA and the MM in conducting from the University of Missouri – Kansas City, the MM in percussion performance from the University of Michigan, and the BM in music education from the University of Tennessee – Martin.

April 2024 17

A Holistic Approach to Life as a Young Teacher

Y“You’ll feel that you’ve learned more about teaching in your first few weeks/months/years than you did in your undergrad!” Educators have been passing down that saying seemingly for generations because for the most part, they’re right. There is no substitute for time in a classroom alone with a bunch of children you’ve been hired to teach. From 10-minute microteaches to semester-long student teaching placements, nothing fully prepares a new teacher for what comes next. Because of that, seemingly every year at FMEA you’ll see a session dedicated to new or young teacher “survival skills” aimed at helping those fresh faces find more success for their students and stave off the potential for burnout. This article hopes to reach the same end goal, but from the perspective of improving the life of the person, not just the teacher, in ways that can lead to more fulfilling days and more restorative time outside the classroom. I approach these topics primarily by posing questions intended for you to ask yourself. Rather than “work-life balance,” let’s aim for “work-life harmony,” which is more malleable and personal than a prescriptive “Do These Things” approach.

Fences make great neighbors, and the power of “no”

Have you ever found yourself in a conversation with someone who constantly brings the subject back to themselves and their own problems? Everyone finds themselves needing to vent, but some people lack the aware-

ness to know they do it constantly. These people are energy-vampires, and this form of narcissism tends to get aimed at friendly faces and kind souls who are more easily trapped in conversation. Somehow these conversations always happened to me when I had somewhere I needed to be or had something I needed to do, which created resentment and frustration toward colleagues I still cared for. Freeing yourself from these situations and learning how to avoid them is a personal process, but never feel guilty for escaping a conversational hostage situation.

Not all performance opportunities are created equal, and not all of them will put your students in a position to be successful. Just because the PTA has a meeting the second week of school and your principal would “love for the jazz band to have an opportunity to perform!” doesn’t mean the group can or should be in the limelight so soon. This is another situation that is very personal to you, your students, your goals, and your philosophy of education as the expert of your subject area on campus. It is wonderful to give your students a chance to play outside of the classroom, especially if it involves appreciative audience members and can earn your program brownie points with someone important. Put your students in a position where they can be successful!

Leave work at work, as often as you can I’m not suggesting you neglect your work or let yourself become unprepared. However, I am suggesting that a lot

18 Florida Music Director

of music teachers I know work too hard or work too much due to inefficiency. At Midwest this past year, I heard a great band director deliver a chilling message: if you were to pass away unexpectedly, the job doesn’t transfer to your next of kin, and there could be a replacement hired with a brand-new ID number before you’re cold and buried. A morbid message, certainly, but one that frames the struggle of music teachers in an honest and more holistic

way. A 2022 Gallup survey found that 44% of U.S. K-12 educators “always” or “very often” feel burned out at work, which was the highest percentage of any industry; College/University was second place at 35% (Marken, S. & Agrawal, S., 2022, para. 1).

The sentiment of “leaving work at work” here is two-fold. In the literal sense, avoiding bringing home

continued on page 20

April 2024 19

A Holistic Approach to Life as a Young Teacher

continued from page 19

additional tasks to do helps create a mental space between the physical spaces of “home” and “work.” Deciding if you want to have your work email connected to your personal devices can be a good place to start. Are you open to having work emails interrupt your evening? Would you like to know an email came in so you can add it to your to-do list for tomorrow morning before school? Or would you rather wait until you arrive on campus to see what is in your inbox? When it comes to grading, would you rather be in pajamas on a recliner at home, or in your office to complete the task before signing out and heading home? Your contract doesn’t bind you to 24/7 availability, so think about how you can best use your time and respect your spaces.

On the figurative side of “leaving work at work” is the emotion we carry home with us from our day. Sometimes the best way to unencumber yourself from the stresses of your day is by venting, whether it is to a loved one, a friend, or a journal. Sometimes venting looks like singing your heart out on the drive home, sometimes it’s going straight to the gym to work up a sweat, and sometimes it is mindful meditation in silence. No matter how you like to vent, the goal is to release pressure so you don’t have to carry it with you into the rest of your life. Separating ourselves from stress creates space where we can better enjoy the companionship of our spouses, partners, friends, and pets.

Learn to draw inspiration from a variety of places

Musicians are no strangers to spending time and money to go to concerts to see our favorite artists perform. Similarly, we go to the movies and spend on streaming services so we can enjoy a variety of storytelling, hoping to connect with characters and their journeys. For many of us, however, this is often about as far as we go to absorb “art.” There are the obvious additions we could make, such as visiting a local art museum, attending live theater performances, or reading more literature, but what if we tried to find inspiration everywhere we looked? The magician Penn Jillette said, “The only secret of magic is that I’m willing to work harder on it than you think it’s worth.” Seek out those who are so talented it seems

like magic, and you’ll find inspiration. Masters of other disciplines like chefs, woodworkers, race car drivers, or winemakers often have qualities similar to those in the traditional arts, and the titans of these fields are often glorified as “artists.”

Your fellow faculty members can be a very practical source of inspiration and are perhaps the most accessible. If you are a young teacher, it is wise to ask your administration who the master teachers on campus are, particularly if they’re outside of the arts department. Like music ensemble teachers, P.E. teachers are also familiar with larger class sizes and may have classroom management strategies you could steal. You may have a master math teacher on campus whose pacing could influence the way you lesson plan. Consider making the time to drop in on a colleague’s class during your planning period—you never know what you may find to be useful in your classroom.

Find peace along the journey of growth

The stoic philosopher Epictetus said, “If you want to improve, be content to be thought foolish and stupid.” It can be intimidating to stand in front of a room of students as their teacher and not know what to do or say, and this can lead to embarrassment, stress, or fatigue. Your growth process as a young teacher parallels the growth your students endure, so be as kind to yourself as you are to a student struggling with a concept. A meditative practice that can be helpful is to imagine the feeling of being praised and appreciated by someone you love. Imagine the feeling of their hand on your shoulder saying, “You did a great job, and I’m proud of you.” Then, try to imagine giving yourself that same support, with the same supportive hand on your shoulder, encouraging yourself and showing yourself this love. Teaching requires constant assessment and critique, and sometimes we forget to treat ourselves as kindly as we treat our students.

Consider measuring your success by semester or year, rather than by days or weeks. The lasting impressions we make are based on consistent daily efforts, but only after those days add up to semesters or years. Recordings can be a great way to remind your students, and yourself, of the significant progress you have made on a macro scale.

20 Florida Music Director

Consider recording moments of early school-year activities so you can share them with the same students at the end of the year and celebrate their success as a by-product of consistent effort. Progress is never linear, but on a proper scale we can begin to see how small gains create the large gains we strive for.

My experience as a teacher and having known fellow teachers enduring common struggles while we were new to the profession led me to ask these questions for myself and to think about what parts of life enriched my ability to be an effective teacher. I often felt that my most successful days came from a holistic place, where all parts of my life were enriching one another. Our selfworth will never be bound to our MPA ratings, annual “effectiveness” ratings, or standardized test scores. Our value to students is much more than that, so the prepa-

rations we make for ourselves need to be holistic and proportionate to the impact we can make. When mind, body, and spirit are attuned to the same goal, we can change the world.


Marken, S. & Agrawal, S. (2022). K-12 Workers Have Highest Burnout Rate in U.S. Gallup Poll. https://news.gallup.com/poll/393500/ workers-highest-burnout-rate.aspx

R. Scott Mullen is a conductor and music educator pursuing the DMA in conducting at the University of Georgia. Mr. Mullen was a teacher in Orange County Public Schools, most recently as director of bands, chorus, and orchestra at Wedgefield School. He is active as an educator, adjudicator, and clinician in Florida and Georgia.

April 2024 21


2023-2024 DONORS

Thank you to all of the donors who have shown their dedication to the improvement of music education in Florida by supporting our Mission through financial contributions.

Our donors support specific causes by donating to the FMEA funds of their choice:

FMEA Scholarship Fund

Music Education Advocacy General Fund

June M. Hinckley Scholarship Professional Development for Members

Mel & Sally Schiff Music Education Relief Fund

The following have graciously donated to FMEA from April 1, 2023, through March 18, 2024.


$10,000 and up No current donors at this time.

Carlos Abril

In Honor of Dr. Joyce Jordan

Andre Arrouet

In Memory of Dr. James Croft

Lucinda Balistreri

Alice-Ann Darrow

In Memory of Mr. & Mrs. O.B. Darrow

Virginia Densmore

In Honor of Dr. Shelby Chipman

Virginia Dickert

In Memory of Lindsay Wells, Teri Wester, & Debbie Liles

Michael Dye

In Honor of Mark & Brenda Scott for their lifetime dedication to Florida vocal music education

Shelby Fullerton

In Memory of Dan Fullerton

Rita Hersom

In Memory of Billy Bryant, Jr.

Marsha Juday

Sheila King

In Memory of John W. King


$1,000 – $9,999

All County Music

Artie Almeida

In Honor of my mother, June Audrey Grace, & my niece, Katie Grace Miller


$100 – $999

Jason Locker

In Memory of June M. Hinckley

Kevin Lusk

Brenda McGlohon Mitchell

In Memory of Dorothy Wells Skinner

Carolyn Minear

In Memory of Alice Fague

John Nista

On Behalf of Stanley Dmitrenko

David Pletincks

In Honor of Alexis & Jonnie Pletincks

Jeanne Reynolds

In Honor of Pinellas County Performing Arts Teachers

Mary Catherine Salo

In Memory of Gary Rivenbark & Wes Rainer

Steven Salo

In Honor of Dr. William Prince & John “Buck” Jamison

Kathleen Sanz

In Memory of June Hinckley

Fred Schiff

Clifford Madsen

Mary Palmer Russell Robinson

J. Mark Scott

In Dedication to Dr. Andre Thomas, Dr. Judy Arthur, Dr. Judy Bowers, & Jason Locker

D. Gregory Springer

Harry Spyker

In Honor of Fred & Marlene Miller

Alan Skaggs

Jeannine Stemmer

In Memory of Barbara Kingman & Lauren Alonso

Leiland Theriot

Richard Uhler

David Verdoni

Howard Weinstein

In Memory of Barry Weinstein

Doris Elaine Wells

In Memory of Dorothy Wells Skinner

Kenneth Williams

Daniel Wood

In Memory of Robert W. Smith

Anonymous (1)

In Memory of Judith Strachman

22 Florida Music Director


$25 – $99

Sandra Adorno

Michael Antmann

Judy Arthur

Sasha Aufschneider

Gale Baker

In Memory of William Bryant, Jr.

Garza Baldwin

In Memory of Dorothy Wells Skinner

William Bauer

David Bayardelle

In Honor of Harry Spyker

Mark Belfast

In Memory of Dr. Mark A. Belfast, Sr.

Johnathan Bosse

In Honor of Rosanne and Michael Bosse

Melanie Brown

In Memory of Dorothy Skinner

Jamie Bryan

Kasia Bugaj

Christopher Burns

Stanley Butts

Greg Carswell

On Behalf of all the Florida choral directors who have passed on Jeff Cayer

Shelby Chipman

In Memory of Herbert Rhodes, Sr.

Blair Clawson

In Honor of Tina Mason

Dayna Cole

In Memory of Linda Mann

Deborah Confredo

In Honor of All the Music Educators of FMEA

Michael Belyea

Crystal Berner

Thomas Brown

In Dedication to Dr. Sanmel A. Floyd

Ernesta Chicklowski

Eduard Ciobotaru

Beth Ann Delmar

Jodie Donahoo

Christopher Dunn

Debbie Fahmie

Dretha Fennell

Thomas Gamache

Scott Evans

Bradley Franks

In Memory of Gary W. Rivenbark

Anna Marie Friars

In Memory of Matthew McLaughlin

Sandra Geres

In Memory of Dorothy Wells Skinner

Dakeyan Graham

Cynthia Heidel

Bernie Hendricks

Alexis Hobbs

Jacob Hyer

Martha Huntley

In Memory of Dorothy Skinner, Safety Harbor, FL

Alexander Jimenez

Aaron Kass

Mary Keyloun Cruz

In Memory of George Keyloun & Pauline Antaki

Cynthia Kohanek

Christine Lapka

Joseph Luechauer

Deborah Mar

In Memory of Barbara Kingman

Matthew McCutchen

In Honor of John Carmichael

Kelly Miller

Victor Mongillo

Daniel Murphy

In Memory of Billy Bryant

Stephen Nelson


up to $24

Tina Gill

In Memory of Gary Rivenbark

Alvaro Gomez

Edepson Gonzalez

James Haggins

Angela Hartvigsen

William Hazlett

Llewellyn Humphrey

Arnekua Jackson

Kathleen James

Jason Jerald

Marsha Kindall-Smith

Marialyce Orr

In Memory of Robert & Bonnie Bragg

Ashley Peek

Justin Plante

Edward Prasse

Marie Radloff

Clinton Randles

Melissa Rawls

In Honor of Nancy Bartels

C. William Renfroe

In Memory of James O. Johnston & Herbert Beam

William Rose

Cheri Sleeper

Eddie Steadman

Mark Stevens

In Honor of Dr. Clifford Madsen

Valerie Terry

Kathleen Thompson

Ellen Turko

In Memory of Billy Bryant

Matthew Weihmuller

Elizabeth Weir

Sondra Wenninger Collins

Seth Wexler

In Honor of Mr. James Monroe

Edith Wright

Anonymous (6)

On Behalf of Derek Schaumann’s Birthday

In Honor of Columbia

County Music Teachers

In Memory of Carol Pollock

Celeste Laburda

In Honor of Eleanora Fagan

Pauline Latorre

Lu Anne Leone

Gerald Madrinan

P. L. Malcolm

John Marshall

Khemya Mitrahina

Merleon Morgan

Mary Palmer

Mikael Patriarca

Hank Phillips

Alexandra Rameau

Ian Schwindt

John Southall

Kelly Southall

Ajori Spencer

Hailey Swanson

Phil Tempkins

In Memory of Susan McCray

Lindsey Williams

Anonymous (14)

In Memory of William Bryant, Jr.

April 2024 23

Component News


Ibegan writing this month’s article sitting on a charter bus heading home after participating in the Savannah St. Patrick’s Day Parade with the Ocoee High School Marching Band. It was an absolutely awesome parade, with a reported attendance of more than 700,000 spectators and 311 parade entries! I mention this event to bring this question/ statement to light: How many other clubs or organizations on any of our school campuses can say their students had the chance to perform, showcase their talent, and/or positively represent the school in front of more than 700,000 people (live, in-person not via website or social media)? Not many … if any!

As music educators, we have such a unique opportunity to be ambassadors not only for our music programs, but for our schools, local communities, school district, and the entire state of Florida as well. When we say we are constantly building life-long memories, that is a “no lie” statement. Going back to my days as a middle and high school band (and even college) student here in Florida, I remember all of the trips, performances,

and wonderful experiences that being a part of positive, comprehensive music programs afforded me.

I’ve seen several social media posts, from numerous Florida music programs, regarding “big” trips to various destinations throughout the United States as well as overseas, and I think it’s fabulous that so many students are building these types of memories. However, let us not forget that small memories are huge as well. Let me explain; not every program will be able to travel all over the country or even around the state. There are a lot of variables that affect what we can and cannot do when it comes to traveling, but we all can provide memorable experiences for our students on a regular basis. In my first year of teaching middle school band at an “inner-city” school in Orlando, we just didn’t have the funds to go anywhere major (other than MPA), so we literally walked to the elementary school that was not too far from us and gave a

great performance for those elementary kids. Eventually, as I built positive relationships with my administrative team as well as local community members and businesses, we were able to take our students on bigger trips around the state and beyond.

I said all that to say this: It’s truly awesome to see so many music programs doing so many things. I encourage each and every one of you to continue to provide these additional experiences for your students. And if this is something you are not currently doing, I encourage you to consider planning something for the future. It’s OK to start small, but it’s an awesome opportunity for all of us to highlight the wonderful things our students are doing on multiple platforms.

I pray you all had a relaxing spring break and are geared up for the last few months of the 2023-24 school year.

Happy spring memory-making season, and stay blessed!

24 Florida Music Director
Ocoee Knights Marching band and KVE marched over three miles in the 200th annual St. Patrick’s Day parade in Savannah, Ga.


Cheri A. Sleeper President

Itis hard to believe that as I write this, we have been through almost three-quarters of the school year. Many of us have finished participating in our district solo and ensemble and music performance assessments, and many have stepped up and offered our facilities to host those events. I realize how challenging it can be not only to prepare for our performances, but also to host events. I appreciate all of you who have offered your facilities for our Florida Orchestra Association events this year. Thank you for your service to the continued success of our organization and more importantly of our students.

I am grateful to the districts who invited me to adjudicate at your music performance assessments. I am so encouraged by how our state and our orchestras continue to progress in our students’ music education. It is also an encouragement to see how many colleagues have had their groups listen to other groups to learn from their performances. I enjoy reading all the Facebook posts from directors and parents about all the great experiences that come from our music performance assessments.

Ever thankful, I must commend our district chairpersons for all they do for our association and more importantly, our students. Your commitment and tireless efforts for your district are NOT unnoticed. I appreciate you for all you do to make your district move forward and assessment events happen. You are truly the individual “links” that make the chain of progress for FOA thrive.

Finally, it is hard to believe the school year is ending with, as it would seem, still so much more to plan and do; end-of-theyear performances, awards banquets, and of course, testing! As we head to the end of the year to include all the above, but also district meetings, please remember to submit your motions and concerns

Music is a more potent instrument than any other for education.
– Plato

to your district chairperson for the May FOA executive board meeting. If you have concerns or would like more clarification about items in the handbook, please con-

tact our past president, Laurie Bitters. The handbook committee will be meeting in July. Should you have any questions or concerns, you can always feel free to contact any of the board members. You can find contact information on our website, myfoa.org

As always, we are here to serve you. Always feel free to ask questions, express concerns, and share ideas. Thank you, ALL, for all that you do.


s the semester is now in full swing, I would like to take the time to reflect on all of the wonderful events and conversations we shared at January’s state conference. First, thank you to those who presented at our FCMEA-sponsored sessions. Dr. Patrick Cooper shared great tips for maximizing learning management systems in our teaching while Dr. Tremon Kizer encouraged professors to find balance in our teaching, research, and service. Dr. Stacie Rossow presented ways to create research and creative activity profiles that stand out, and Drs. Carlos Abril, Christine Lapka, Greg LeFils, and Alicia Romero-Sardiñas served on the higher education panel titled “Supporting and Retaining Preservice and In-Service Music Teachers.” In addition to our sessions, we also sponsored two meetings: our general business meeting and the new “Collaborative Connections in Higher Education Meeting.”

During our general business meeting, we were able to vote on changes to our by-laws and announce the winner of our third annual FCMEA Creative Explorations Grant. Congratulations to Dr. Patrick Cooper, assistant professor of music education at Florida International University, on his project “Accessibility Week – Music Education for All,” which was awarded $1,500. His project aims to describe the impact of music education workshops centered on accessibility on music education majors’ preparedness to work with students with differing abilities. Additionally, our Collaborative Connections meeting was also a great success. University professors around the state discussed how we can better retain and support our university music students and beginning music teachers.

Even though the semester is flying by, there is still time to get involved! Our mentorship program application is still open, so if you would like to join as a mentor, mentee, or both, please fill out the form on our website. Please visit our website (FCMEA.org ), check your email for any updates, and contact the board with any questions or ideas to improve our great organization.

April 2024 25

Component News

Jazz Appreciation Month Resources

Hi, everyone. Before we get started, let’s listen to this message from jazz legends Dianne Reeves (English ) and Paquito D’Rivera (Spanish ).

In 2001, the National Museum of American History designated April as Jazz Appreciation Month or “JAM.” The purpose of JAM is “to stimulate and encourage people of all ages to participate in jazz—to study the music, attend concerts, listen to jazz on radio and recordings, read books about jazz, and more.” The museum provides a great deal of resources for music lovers and teachers interested in learning more about the heritage and history of jazz. Here are a few areas of their website I recommend you check out:


The Education section of the website provides a significant number of class activities, listening examples, lesson plans, and even an 88-page curriculum related to Louis Armstrong. Many of the lesson plans are designed for elementary school children, but the keen educator will be able to easily adapted those lessons for older students. There are full classes on Benny Carter, Duke Ellington, and Louis Armstrong, as well as a fascinating oral history program with bassist and artist manager John Levy, whose clients included Johnny Hartman, Joe Williams, Sarah Vaughan, Cannonball Adderley, Freddie Hubbard, Ahmad Jamal, and more. Another neat feature of the Education section is the Today in Jazz History page, where the viewer can find interesting jazz facts for each day of the year.



Collections and Archives

In the Collections and Archives section, you’ll find a page dedicated to jazz oral histories contributed by nearly 100 NEA Jazz Masters. Imagine if you could learn about the history and heritage of jazz from Quincy Jones, Dave Brubeck, Shirley Horn, or Sweets Edison. Well … you can!

A teacher guide and student worksheet are also available to accompany the oral histories.

Also found in the Collections and Archives section is a page dedicated to Latin Jazz. With its unique blend of African and Caribbean traditions, Latin Jazz frequented the air waves, night clubs,

26 Florida Music Director

and dance halls in the 1940s and 1950s. Check out this page to learn how its intoxicating rhythms, high energy, and infectious grooves helped make Latin Jazz an integral component of jazz history.

Jazz Appreciation Month

Finally, the National Museum of American History website includes a section dedicated specifically to Jazz Appreciation Month. The page provides links to download featured artist posters, images, recordings, and other materials. Near the bottom of the page, you’ll also find a link to suggested ways to celebrate JAM.

Supporting Jazz in Florida

As we move out of Music in Our Schools Month® and begin JAM, I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the jazz ensembles from Alexander W. Dreyfus School of the Arts and Osceola County School for the Arts. Both groups have been invited to perform in New York City as finalists in this year’s Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition & Festival. Perhaps your chapter might consider supporting these student musicians financially or otherwise as they prepare for their momentous trip. If you are near either of these schools in Central and South Florida, I also highly recommend you contact the directors at the school and go observe them teach. With such great resources in our very own back yard, it would be a shame not to take advantage of them when we have the chance.

As always, do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of assistance to you. I hope you have a wonderful Jazz Appreciation Month, and I look forward to seeing all the amazing ways you will celebrate as the semester comes to a close.

We’vereached that time of the semester. Most of it is in the past now, but it’s too early to say it’s almost over. As collegiate students, we’re all in different stages of life right now. Some of us are preparing to start our internship while others are finishing up and preparing for a new beginning in the workforce. Some of us are exhausted and mentally preparing for finals. Still others of us are finishing up our first year away from home.

Regardless of where we are on our degree path, most of us are pretty tired and ready for a break (even if we just had one). In my experience, this is when burnout hits the hardest. It’s about this time you begin to feel guilty for spending time with friends when you have three assignments waiting at home. Suddenly, you feel like you barely have time to eat because of the amount of work piling up on your to-do list.

Recently, a friend said to me “we’re human first.” I needed to hear that, and I have a feeling I’m not alone in that sentiment. I’m not saying we should ignore all of our responsibilities and procrastinate to the last minute, but our worth as a human is not determined by the grades we get or—and this is a big one—how much we practice. If you miss one day of practicing in order to feel like a person again, the world will not end and you will not be a worse musician because of it. Work hard, but don’t be afraid to take breaks, especially when you deserve them.

In fact, our brains work better when they aren’t fatigued. There comes a point when continuing to push through will only make things worse. If you suddenly cannot play simple phrases, or you need to read the same paragraph five times before you actually understand what is being said, it’s time for a break. It’s likely that when you get back, everything will seem much easier.

There are many ways we as students can set ourselves up for success during this time. Six to eight hours of sleep is essential to be successful, especially for musicians (those late-night practice sessions may not be helping you as much as you think). Dehydration and a lack of sleep can result in a buildup of lactic acid in our muscles, and it will only make playing more difficult. Get the sleep you need because your responsibilities will still be there in the morning. Finally, take the time to make yourself a decent quality meal. We all deserve to eat good food, beyond the Chickfil-A I’m sure is somewhere on your campus.

We are only human and are bound to make mistakes. During this stressful time of year, be kind to yourself. Work hard, but don’t forget to take care of yourself in the process.

April 2024 27


A Musical World In Which Students Belong


Sacks writes, “Every act of perception, is to some degree an act of creation.” We open doors so students can discover a musical world in which they belong. When students feel belonging, they build cognitive connections that last a lifetime. Integrating modern band concepts into my curriculum transformed my students’ interest in music mastery and gave voice to all cultures in my classroom.

I ventured into modern band during the pandemic. I needed student engagement but never knew where they would be on any given day. My students had Chromebooks. Using Soundtrap’s digital audio workspace was easy to learn, and students loved it. Digital composition led to arranging our school anthem, sound Foley collaborations with the art department, a student podcast in humanities, and a multigrade instrument design unit in conjunction with our design thinking program.

I took MusicWill.org’s free modern band 101 and 102 courses. They provide amazing tools for teaching music theory, arranging, sound Foley, digital composition, music production, folk, hip-hop, music media, and basic skills on all of the modern band instruments (guitar, keyboard, drum set, bass, and ukulele). Over the course of three years, with no outof-pocket cost, I received professional development, learned where to begin, and witnessed a transformation.

Here is one story from my classroom to yours:

Alpacas with Headphones, this year’s modern band, could not settle on a song to perform at the winter musical. They wanted to keep practicing the song they loved, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” by Nirvana, and I wanted a song that didn’t have the word libido in it. Fitting this into a concert alongside beautiful student Orff arrangements and four-part choral rounds was not in my original plan. But in this band I saw leadership, peer-mentoring, and student-led collaboration. Members practiced during lunch. Their parents messaged me that kids were excited to come to school because of music! I had to do something bold and out of my comfort zone because they were in love with music, so we rewrote the classic.


“Smells Like Christmas Spirit” led to a parent mosh pit, a social media blitz, dozens of students asking to join the band, and a big smile on my principal’s face. Letting the students shine is always the right choice especially when it stems from responsive teaching.

We work together with our students to orchestrate masterpieces in real time as we nudge children out of their shells and onto the stage whether through singing “Dona Nobis Pacem” or festive arrangements of Nirvana.

Helping students find their path is essential to unlocking their potential. Aaron Copland urges listeners to take contemporary music seriously. “Contemporary music is created to wake you up, not put you to sleep. It is meant to stir and excite you, to move you—it may even exhaust you … each new generation must create its own music.” Modern band education is uniquely equipped to harness interest and build transferable skills through student-centered learning as children discover a musical world in which they belong.

Abigail Jones Walker teaches first through eighth grade at Creative Learning Academy in Pensacola. She plays bassoon in the orchestra, improvising a life with her husband, three sons, dog, cat, and chickens.

28 Florida Music Director Component


The Importance of Reaching Out for Support

s president of the Florida Music Supervision Association (FMSA), I have the privilege of working with some of the most dedicated and passionate music educators in the state. I have witnessed firsthand the amazing work they do in their classrooms, ensembles, and communities. I have also seen the challenges and obstacles they face, especially in those districts that do not have a music supervisor or coordinator.

Music education is a vital and valuable part of a well-rounded education. It fosters creativity, expression, collaboration, and critical thinking. It enriches the lives of students and prepares them for the future. It also contributes to the cultural and social fabric of our society. However, music education is not always given the attention, recognition, and support it deserves. Many music educators struggle with limited resources, inadequate facilities, insufficient professional development, and lack of advocacy.

That is why I urge those schools without supervisors in their district to reach out for support whenever needed. You are not alone. You have a network of colleagues and allies who are ready to help you. While we may be employed by our own school districts, members of the Florida Music Supervision Association are here to provide you with guidance, resources, mentoring, and advocacy. We are a professional organization that represents and serves the interests of

music supervisors and coordinators in Florida. We also collaborate and communicate with other music education associations, such as the Florida Music Education Association (FMEA), the Florida Bandmasters Association (FBA), the Florida Orchestra Association (FOA), and the Florida Vocal Association (FVA).

The FMSA is also actively involved in promoting and supporting music education at the district and state levels. We are preparing to speak to the district superintendents in early April and champion the need for support in all areas of the state for music. We will advocate for the hiring and retention of qualified music supervisors and coordinators. A supervisor or coordinator at the district level may support the allocation and distribution of adequate

funding and resources, the provision and improvement of appropriate facilities and equipment, the implementation and evaluation of quality music curriculum and instruction, and the recognition and celebration of music education achievements and excellence.

If you are a music educator in a district without a supervisor or coordinator, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to listen, advise, and assist you. You can reach me at christopher.burns@ osceolaschools.net.

Together, we can make a difference for music education in Florida. Thank you for your dedication and commitment to your students and your profession. You are making a positive impact every day. Keep up the great work!

April 2024 29



Classroom Management in K–12 Classroom Music: A

Review of the Literature


music educators widely agree that effective classroom management is crucial for students’ success. However, research consistently highlights the significant challenges novice music teachers face in managing their classrooms. Compared to other teaching environments, music classrooms pose unique difficulties due to factors such as large class sizes, diverse teaching methods, emphasis on collaboration, and the public nature of performances and competitions. In an article recently published in Update: Applications of Research in Music Education, Jacob Langstaff (2024) reviewed the literature (existing research studies) on classroom management. The following is a summary of Langstaff’s article.

Defining Classroom Management

Across the studies reviewed, there was a lack of consensus regarding how to clearly define or categorize the elements of classroom management. Researchers tended to conceptualize it along a spectrum, with some taking a very broad view that encompasses nearly anything involving addressing or preventing misbehaviors. Others subscribed to narrower interpretations focused specifically on discipline, keeping students on-task, or aligning behavior management with instructional goals. This lack of a commonly accepted definition represents an opportunity for the field to work toward greater clarity.

Preservice Teacher Perspectives

Although there is uncertainty in defining classroom management, the research makes clear that it is an area of significant concern for both preservice and in-service music teachers at all levels. Multiple studies have identified classroom management as a primary source of anxiety or stress for preservice teachers before and during their student teaching placements. However, some researchers have found that confidence in managing classrooms can improve over time through interventions such as video-based training simulations, peer teaching

opportunities, and actual classroom experience over time. Interestingly, international research indicated that preservice teachers’ classroom management expectations and cultural norms around student-teacher dynamics differed across countries.

In-Service Teacher Perspectives

For in-service music teachers, particularly those new to the profession, classroom management represents one of their biggest challenges. Experienced teachers consistently rated classroom management skills as vitally important for success, even more so than preservice teachers did. Several studies documented in-service teachers’ dissatisfaction with the preparation they received for classroom management during their preservice training programs. Case studies of novice teachers illustrated how the pressing realities of classroom management could overshadow other priorities.

Approaches to Classroom Management

Finally, some researchers delved into the methods, styles, and strategies adopted by music educators for managing their classrooms. Through observations, it was noted that teachers employed techniques such as strategic pacing of activities, varying degrees of student autonomy, and utilizing frameworks such as the Zone of Proximal Development.1 Additionally, investigations explored the effects of interventions such as integrating music-making into lessons, implementing class-wide behavior management systems, and incorporating technology. While these studies offered some insights, their limited scope points to a need for much more comprehensive research into effective, context-specific classroom management approaches for music education settings.

Implications for Practice

The literature highlights various implications for teacher preparation and practice. Since there is no unified definition, it would be advantageous for researchers and educators to clearly articulate their understanding of classroom manage-

30 Florida Music Director
of Florida
on-going column seeks to stimulate awareness of research issues for FMEA teachers and researchers.

Component News


ment. The diverse viewpoints suggest that classroom management might encompass multiple dimensions, including instructional design, behavior management, and classroom culture. Educators are calling for more targeted, hands-on training that addresses the specific management challenges encountered in music education. Additionally, the findings affirm the value of providing ample fieldwork, peer teaching, and video observation experiences to help preservice teachers build relevant classroom management skills before entering the classroom. Mentorship from experienced teachers is also highlighted as an important developmental need. The cultural differences identified in classroom management expectations reinforce the importance of preparing teachers to implement culturally responsive management practices.

Need for Further Research

Overall, Langstaff’s (2024) review of the literature underscores classroom management as both an area of tremendous need and opportunity within music teacher education and practice. While much has been explored, there remains a lack of consensus and research-based guidance to ensure music educators are equipped with comprehensive, context-specific classroom management competencies. To learn more, read the full article, which can be accessed as part of your FMEA/NAfME membership at https://tinyurl. com/update-journal.


Langstaff, J. (2024). Classroom management in k–12 classroom music: A review of the literature. Update: Applications of Research in Music Education, 42(2), 42–50. https://doi.org/10.1177/87551233231162927


1 For more information about the Zone of Proximal Development, see https://tinyurl.com/zonedev

Overthe past 20 years, I have always been impressed with the outstanding leadership we have in the FVA. These leaders are quality people who aren’t just great musicians, but people of great character. I’ve mentioned this before, but I can honestly say many of my closest friends are members of this organization. At the core of any person in leadership should be a servant heart; true leaders are people who genuinely care about others. While society is becoming more and more self-serving, we need to continue raising and developing selfless leaders in our association.

As I’ve been traveling around the state this spring, it has thrilled me to see so many of our young directors stepping into roles of leadership. Outstanding choral directors, who graduated from 2016–2019, are now attending adjudicator training, serving as district chairpersons, adjudicating solo and ensemble, and coordinating and conducting county and district honor choirs. It’s so exciting to see the next group of leaders for the FVA becoming more active and being willing to serve the membership.

Whenever someone asks me about ways to get more involved in leadership, I tell them to be available and ready to serve. Look for ways to serve. Be around places that will need help. Monitor all-state rehearsals, be there as an extra body to help with check-in. Again, many times it’s just a matter of being available. You might be around an all-state rehearsal and then be asked to help audition soloists or to help with monitoring bathroom breaks. At district MPAs, do you ever go back to help after your choir has performed? Is there sufficient help while the district chairperson is taking their choirs through the MPA process?

It makes me so happy to see all the young directors who aren’t just making a difference in their schools, but around their district and state as well. No matter your age or years of service, if you are looking for ways to serve, there are plenty of options. It doesn’t require a title, just a heart of a servant.

April 2024 31
Email your questions and feedback to wbauer@ufl.edu with a subject heading Research Puzzles.

Committee Reports


It All Starts With the Music We Love

s a music teacher in Michigan, I coached one rock band at a time. Students came to me for guitar lessons that would always start with learning the music they loved—the riffs, the chord progressions, and the timbral choices that created the foundation of songs that inspired them. These ventures would sometimes lead to them singing particular songs we were working on, and other times not. In the case of one particular student, we had worked on some cover songs and dabbled with an original song he could not actually sing and play at the same time. We multitrack recorded him playing the guitar track, and then followed with recording him doing the vocal part. As it turned out, he ended up being a finalist in a state songwriting competition, which meant he would need to perform the song live.

I quickly accessed my music teacher skill set. I taught K-12 music at a school in Michigan, and so had access and knowledge of around 700 musicians (K-12), including the general music students who I taught at the elementary level. I decided with my student’s permission to recruit a singer for a band he would assemble from among his friends. I chose a fourth-grade female vocalist who was a part of a choir I taught as well as in my general music class. The decision was not all that popular with the fifth-grade boys who made up the band. She was a fourth grader … and a girl … two strikes. However, she joined the band, performed with them at

the state music education conference, and just recently informed me she has begun a master’s in vocal music performance degree at the University of Michigan— she was really good; I could see that very early on!

A lot of great things are possible in our musical lives when we start covering our favorite songs. The pathway of working up a song is lined with hurdles both technical and musical we need jump over. What key works best for our voice? If we are playing guitar, do we need to use a capo? When do we copy a song note for note, and when do we take artistic liberty in realizing our own unique version?

32 Florida Music Director

Cover songs are a gateway into the world of songwriting. They are also good in and of themselves. Someone need not become a songwriter for them to glean positive and incredibly meaningful experiences from the process of covering songs. Here are some items to guide your thinking about cover songs:

1. Let students choose their songs most of the time.

2. Try to understand the genres, styles, and artists that make up your students’ musical universe.

3. Know that your students’ songwriting style will in many ways begin with their musical heroes.

4. As they find their niche and as you begin to understand where they come from musically, expose students to artists and sounds that might have inspired their style.

5. Help students find keys for the songs that fit their vocal range.

6. Help students discover better ways to perform the chords and riffs that are required of particular songs.

7. Help students in any way you can to realize their vision for their cover songs.

8. Be prepared to play any parts that are missing to help students realize their vision for the arrangement of a song.

9. Think about what your students’ emerging style based on their musical interests might mean for the community you serve.

10. In what ways can you celebrate and use your students’ heroes to teach the rest of the class something of value?


Happy spring, FMEA family! I hope you have had the opportunity to read about your FMEA 2024 awardees in the February/March 2024 Florida Music Director and how each award recipient is supporting and furthering quality and exemplary music education throughout our state. Their collective dedication and passion toward music education throughout Florida is truly inspiring! If you have not yet seen this impressive spread of your FMEA awardees, please click HERE.

In the coming months I would like to share with you a little of the brilliance that our awardees have to offer you, speaking their truth about music education and the passion that drives them. I share these words of inspiration with you to give you the confidence to be the light to your own students, as well as the drive to help shine a light on others in our next nomination period.

First off, we will start with some inspiring words from our 2024 FMEA Elementary Music Educator of the Year, Cynthia Kohanek.

Cynthia Kohanek, elementary music educator at Pinecrest Elementary School in Miami-Dade County Public Schools, inspires through truth:

“Music lifts and unlocks creative expression. Joining together to make music is a sacred experience that makes us feel alive and connected. As music educators we just don’t have the opportunity to teach students the fundamentals of music, but also open their hearts or tap into the power of creative expression, as a powerful equalizing force. Students enter my music classroom with many differences and many voices, but it’s when they begin to make music that those differences fade away and they join together as one. Music knows no language, ethnicity, gender, or learning capability. Music is for the masses, and every opportunity should be made to ensure inclusion and access. It is rewarding to witness how students learn to listen to themselves and to others, and experience how their own voice fits into the tapestry or a symphony of voices around them.

My life’s passion has been to create pathways to mentor and teach current and future music educators by leading various communities in music making and by serving as a clinical supervising teacher, mentor, and adjunct professor. I have relished the opportunity to guide, share, and learn from our future educators. Having access to direct various professional community and opera children’s choirs, district music festivals, and professional learning has made me confident that I am doing my part and will continue to create a space where music for children can be accessed. I am incredibly humbled and grateful to know whether my students go on to become international recording artists or simply gain a deep appreciation for the arts, I know that my life’s work as a music educator continues to be central to the social, emotional, and cultural development of our young people (our future!).

Why music? Because it’s the soul of education.”

April 2024 33

Committee Reports

Technology Removes Barriers for Diverse Learners

Youcare about the diverse learners in your classes, and you expend effort as you develop ways to include them in making music. You use special percussion instrument holders and grips, or you remove bars from Orff instruments. However, your students still encounter barriers to education. The solution to many of these barriers is to use technology.

In the past we might have feared that the electronic keyboard would replace acoustic music-making. I think we can verify how electronic keyboards have not replaced acoustic pianos; in fact, they have improved access to music education. Just think about the piano labs in our schools or how an electric keyboard is the only way some families can afford a piano in their homes. In addition, those electronic instrument sounds have improved.

Electronic instruments are often cost effective, have improved tone colors, and are motivational. In addition, because technology is customizable, these tools can be the only option for some of our

students with limited mobility. Apple advertising states, “If you can tap, you can play.” In addition, our students with intellectual disabilities might need the intuitive or clear visuals that technology provides.

For example, if you are teaching ukulele or guitar and some students with intellectual disabilities do not understand that placing

their fingers on strings makes a C chord, then they might need to use the iOS GarageBand’s smart instruments (iOS refers to iPhone or iPad—not the computer version). In this version, when they see the letter C on the screen, touching the letter C to make the C chord is a much clearer step. Even if they do not know that the letter is called C, they can match the visual from the chord changes you show on a screen or lead sheet. Success, they can play with the rest of the class. Likewise, a student with physical barriers to playing ukulele or guitar has a better chance of performing with the group as touching the letter on the screen is naturally much easier than forming a chord on a uke. They can also strum across the visual of the strings. See Figure 1.

If strumming is a barrier, the Smart Guitar has an auto-play feature that will automatically play a picking or strumming pattern without having to keep tapping the chord. See Figure 2.

34 Florida Music Director
FIGURE 1. GarageBand guitar chords FIGURE 2. GarageBand auto-play

For more about how to play the Smart Guitar, see this tutorial https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kiCgUtGDK1E (auto-play demonstrated at 1:30). Lastly, if the student or school has an iOS device, GarageBand is free.

Another favorite app for making music is ThumbJam (currently for iOS devices; however, it might be back on Android devices in the future). There are several tutorials available online. You might like https://www.youtube. com/watch?v=HMMgPOKUw48 As you can see in the picture, you select the scale (Loop Blues) instrument timbre (trombone). Pitches are shown on the side. Simply touch the lines on the screen to play. Vibrato or tremolo are created by shaking the device. While many play with horizontal orientation with low pitches on the left and higher on the right like a keyboard, it might be logical for a novice to change the orientation to have higher pitches at the top and lower pitches at the bottom like the photo. See Figure 3.

Also, ThumbJam is cost effective at $8.99. My suggestion is to always try to have the hardware and software listed in the Individualized Education Program (IEP). Perhaps there are additional funds available for materials listed in the IEP. Be aware, when purchased for an individual, the materials follow that student during their education.

Finally, as these devices are portable, students can access them at home. At-home practice will give these students more time to process and work on their skills. As increased time is usually one of the mandated accommodations on an IEP, providing a way for students to practice outside of class will be one way to have more time.

Please consider the benefits of technology. These apps can remove physical, mental, financial, and time barriers. We love music technology.


https://www.apple.com/ios/garageband/ https://thumbjam.com


April 2024 35
FIGURE 3. ThumbJam
36 Florida Music Director Partners as of March 18, 2024. *Please visit FMEA.org/partners for partnership details or call 850-878-6844. SILVER PARTNERS Bornoff Foundation for the Advancement of String Education (FASE, Inc.) Music Man GOLD

Please take time to thank and support our 2023-2024 Corporate Partners.


Amazing Student Tours


Head’s House of Music

Heartsong AV Services Institute for Music Business

J.W. Pepper & Son, Inc.


Music & Arts

Music is Elementary National Concerts

Romeo Music

Trevor James Flutes

West Music Company

April 2024 37


Partners as of March 18, 2024.

*Please visit FMEA.org/partners for partnership details or call 850-878-6844.

38 Florida Music Director

Please take time to thank and support our 2023-2024 Academic Partners.



Florida Southern College

Rollins College Department of Music

St. Thomas University

University of North Florida

University of North Texas

April 2024 39


The mission of The Florida Music Education Association is to promote quality, comprehensive music education for all Florida students as a part of their complete education.

FMEA Executive Director

Florida Music Education Association and Florida School Music Association

Spring arrived on March 19, 2024. The spring activities are gearing up for all of the fantastic music programs throughout the state of Florida! It is a wonderful time of year as the concerts are scheduled and performed. In addition, the secondary music performance assessments are scheduled and conducted.

Oftentimes our membership and the public are confused about the purpose and role of the two large music associations in the state, the Florida Music Education Association and the Florida School Music Association. Both of these associations were formed to raise the level of music education for Florida teachers and students.

Florida Music Education Association (FMEA)

The Mission of the Florida Music Education Association is to promote quality, comprehensive music education in all Florida schools.

The Florida Music Education Association was founded in 1944 and combined with the Florida State Music Educators Association that was formed in parallel fashion in 1951. In the academic year 1966-67, the two separate music associations, the FMEA and FSMEA, merged into a single association under the name Florida Music Educators Association. In 2015 the name of the Florida Music Educators Association was changed to the Florida Music Education Association to broaden the perspective of music education in the state.

FMEA is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization that serves and supports music education across Florida. FMEA promotes and publishes the Florida Music Director and music education research, organizes in-person and online professional development programs for music teachers and students, and broadens teachers’ knowledge and interest in their profession through

affiliation with colleagues. In addition, the FMEA organizes the FMEA Professional Learning Conference and the All-State Concerts.

Florida School Music Association (FSMA)

The Mission of the Florida School Music Association is to provide leadership, advocacy, and services for school music programs in support of quality music education experiences for students.

The Florida School Music Association, Inc. (FSMA) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation that was established in 1998 after the Florida High School Activities Association (FHSAA) was restructured in 1997. The purpose of this association is to provide oversight for interscholastic music activities for public, public charter, private, and home school students at the middle and high school levels. The Florida School Music Association organizes in-person leadership development programs for music teachers and the secondary music components, the Florida Bandmasters Association, Florida Orchestra Association, and the Florida Vocal Association. In addition, the FSMA provides oversight for the music performance assessments (MPAs).

The FMEA and FSMA work collaboratively to advocate for high-quality music programs in the state. The 2024 Legislative Session concluded recently, and the Florida Seal of Fine Arts passed through both the Senate and the House and has been sent to Governor DeSantis for his signature. Please see Jeanne Reynold’s article in this month’s Florida Music Director for detailed information on this legislative session and next steps.

I hope you had a wonderful and relaxing spring break and are now looking forward to a rewarding and prosperous semester.

Kathleen D. Sanz, PhD Musically,

Kathleen D. Sanz, PhD

40 Florida Music Director


Officers and Directors



Jason P. Locker

Orange County Public Schools

445 W. Amelia St.; Orlando, FL 32801 (407) 317-3200; jasonlocker@fmea.org

Past President

Shelby R. Chipman, PhD

Florida A&M University, Department of Music Foster-Tanner Music Bldg., Room 318 Tallahassee, FL 32307; (850) 599-8165 shelby.chipman@famu.edu


Scott Evans

Orange County Public Schools

445 S. Amelia St.; Orlando, FL 32801 (407) 317-3200; scott.evans@ocps.net

FBA President

Bernard (Bernie) Hendricks, Jr.

Ocoee High School

1925 Ocoee Crown Point Pkwy.; Ocoee, FL 34761 bernard.hendricks@ocps.net

FCMEA President

Sandra Sanchez Adorno, PhD

Florida International University 10910 SW 17 St.; Miami, FL 33199 sadorno@fiu.edu

FEMEA President

Ashley Peek

Holley-Navarre Intermediate

1936 Navarre School Rd.; Navarre, FL 32566-7504 ashley@femea.flmusiced.org

Florida NAfME Collegiate President Megan Robichaud University of North Florida n01492523@unf.edu

Florida NAfME Collegiate Advisor

Mark A. Belfast, Jr., PhD Florida State University mbelfast@fsu.edu

FMSA President

Christopher Burns, PhD School District of Osceola County (407) 870-4901; christopher.burns@ osceolaschools.net

FOA President

Cheri A. Sleeper

Strawberry Crest High School 4691 Gallagher Dr.; Dover, FL 33527 (813) 363-4139; cheri.sleeper@hcps.net

FVA President David Pletincks

Powell Middle School 4100 Barclay Ave.; Brooksville, FL 34609-0860 (352) 403-8437; david@fva.net


Harry “Skip” Pardee

Collier County Public Schools 5775 Osceola Trail; Naples, FL 34109-0919 (239) 377-0087; pardeh@collierschools.com


Historian/Parliamentarian & Executive Director ................................................. Kathleen D. Sanz, PhD

Hinckley Center for Fine Arts Education 402 Office Plaza Dr.; Tallahassee, FL 32301-2757 (850) 878-6844; Fax: (850) 942-1793; kdsanz@fmea.org

Editor-in-Chief Kelly Miller, DMA

University of Central Florida; 12488 Centaurus Blvd.; Orlando, FL 32816-8009 (407) 823-4545; kelly.miller@ucf.edu

Conference Planning Committee Chairperson John K. Southall, PhD Indian River State College; 3209 Virginia Ave.; Fort Pierce, FL 34981 (772) 418-9133; johnsouthall@me.com

FSMA President Jane Goodwin Jwin555@gmail.com

Hall of Fame Chairperson Mary Palmer, EdD (407) 252-5172; mpalmerassoc@aol.com


Advocacy Jeanne W. Reynolds (727) 744-7252; jeannewrey@gmail.com

Awards Sondra A. W. Collins sondra.collins@marion.k12.fl.us

Budget/Finance, Development Jason P. Locker Orange County Public Schools; 445 W. Amelia St.; Orlando, FL 32801 (407) 317-3200; jasonlocker@fmea.org

Contemporary Media Clint Randles, PhD University of South Florida; 4202 E. Fowler Ave.; Tampa, FL 33620-9951 (813) 974-2311; randlesc@usf.edu

Diverse Learners Christine Lapka, EdD University of Central Florida; 12488 Centaurus Blvd.; Orlando, FL 32816-2372; christine.lapka@ucf.edu

Emerging Leaders Dakeyan C. Graham, PhD, EdD, DMA Alachua County Public Schools; 3600 NE 15th St.; Gainesville, FL 32609 dregraham@gmail.com

Florida Corporate & Academic Partners Fred Schiff All County Music; 8136 N. University Dr.; Tamarac, FL 33321-1708 (954) 722-3424; fred@allcountymusic.com

Health & Wellness

Aaron Kass Lake Nona High School; 12500 Narcoossee Rd.; Orlando, FL 32832-6922 (407) 956-8327; aaron.kass@ocps.net

Multicultural Network Arnekua Jackson, PhD Boynton Beach Community High School; 4975 Park Ridge Blvd.; Boynton Beach, FL 33426-8318 (561) 713-6851; arnekua.jackson@palmbeachschools.org

Professional Learning ...........................................................Ajori Spencer Pinellas District Office; 301 4th St. SW; Largo, FL 33770-3536 (727) 588-6055; spencera@pcsb.org

Research William I. Bauer, PhD University of Florida; (352) 273-3182; wbauer@ufl.edu

Secondary General Music Ed Prasse Leon High School; 550 E. Tennessee St.; Tallahassee, FL 32308 (850) 617-5700; prassee@leonschools.net

Student Engagement Michael Antmann, EdD Freedom High School; 2500 W. Taft-Vineland Rd.; Orlando, FL 32837 (407) 816-5600; michael.antmann@ocps.net


Exhibits Manager fmeaexhibits@fmea.org

Local Chairperson Jon Sever (813) 272-4861; jon.sever@sdhc.k12.fl.us


President Bernard (Bernie) Hendricks, Jr. Ocoee High School; 1925 Ocoee Crown Point Pkwy.; Ocoee, FL 34761 bernard.hendricks@ocps.net

Past President Ian Schwindt Titusville High School; 150 Terrier Trail S.; Titusville, FL 32780-4735 (321) 264-3108; schwindt.ian@brevardschools.org

Executive Director Neil Jenkins Florida Bandmasters Association P.O. Box 840135; Pembroke Pines, FL 33084 (954) 432-4111; Fax: (954) 432-4909; exec@fba.flmusiced.org Business Manager............................................................... Jo Hagan, CPA 8975 San Rae Rd.; Jacksonville, FL 32257 (904) 379-2245; Fax: (904) 379-2260; jo@barefootaccounting.com


President Sandra Sanchez Adorno, PhD Florida International University; 10910 SW 17 St.; Miami, FL 33199 sadorno@fiu.edu

Past President Marc Decker, DMA Florida Atlantic University; 777 Glades Rd.; Boca Raton, FL 33431 deckerm@fau.edu


President Megan Robichaud

University of North Florida; n01492523@unf.edu

Past President ................................................................. Colin Urbina University of Central Florida; co006947@ucf.edu


President................................................................................. Ashley Peek

Holley-Navarre Intermediate; 1936 Navarre School Rd.; Navarre, FL 32566-7504; ashley@femea.flmusiced.org

Past President Joani Slawson Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy; 1720 Peachtree St.; Melbourne, FL 32901 joanislawson@gmail.com

Executive Director Jennifer Sullivan 1750 Common Way Rd., Orlando, FL 32814 (321) 624-5433; slljenn@aol.com


President Christopher Burns, PhD School District of Osceola County (407) 870-4901; christopher.burns@osceolaschools.net

Past President Lindsey R. Williams, PhD Seminole County Public Schools (407) 320-0434; willialz2@scps.k12.fl.us


President.......................................................................... Cheri A. Sleeper Strawberry Crest High School; 4691 Gallagher Dr.; Dover, FL 33527 (813) 363-4139; cheri.sleeper@hcps.net

Past President Laurie Bitters

Winter Park High School; 2100 Summerfield Rd.; Winter Park, FL 32792 (407) 622-3200; laurie.bitters@gmail.com

Executive Director Donald Langland 220 Parsons Woods Dr.; Seffner, FL 33594 (813) 502-5233; Fax: (813) 502-6832; exdirfoa@yahoo.com


President David Pletincks Powell Middle School; 4100 Barclay Ave.; Brooksville, FL 34609-0860 (352) 403-8437; david@fva.net

Past President Jeannine Stemmer Florida Christian School, 4200 SW 89th Ave.; Miami, FL 33165 j9stemmer@floridachristian.org

Executive Director Michael Dye 231 S. Bayshore Dr.; Valparaiso, FL 32580 (850) 217-7419; mike@fva.net

Business Manager Jo Hagan, CPA 8975 San Rae Rd.; Jacksonville, FL 32257 (904) 379-2245; Fax: (904) 379-2260; business@fva.net


402 Office Plaza Dr.; Tallahassee, FL 32301-2757 (850) 878-6844; Fax: (850) 942-1793

President Kathleen D. Sanz, PhD (kdsanz@fmea.org)

Director of Operations Valeria Anderson, IOM (val@fmea.org)

Technology Director Josh Bula, PhD (josh@fmea.org) Marketing & Membership Coordinator Jasmine VanWeelden (jasmine@fmea.org)

Administrative Assistant Siena Deaton (siena@fmea.org)


April 2024 41
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