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The new money managements laws coming out of Olympia this year have drastically changed the funding structure of our schools. School funding for music programs may only come from local levies, which can't exceed $2500/student.
We don't know yet exactly what this means, but I assure you there will be many programs that want to share these funds.
If I am elected to the position of school board director, I will work tirelessly to promote and protect the finely honed music programs in our district.
I am a musician and a music teacher. My experience with the ESD programs in particular started in 1969. I was the piano accompanist for the choirs and jazz band, and a violinist in the Orchestras at both Brier Junior High and Lynnwood High School≥
My daughters both graduated from Edmonds Woodway High School, where they participated in the orchestra.
I am so proud that one of my piano student, Alyssa Tran, played in LHS jazz combos throughout high school. I do believe I contributed Matthew Nguyen to the jazz band at Meadowdale HS, as well.
So I have been around the ESD music programs for ... 49 years!
I've had the opportunity to attend some school concerts this last month. What is remarkable to me is the amazing growth that's occurred since I first came here. My orchestra at Lynnwood High School? There were about 15 of us. Now? Amy Stevenson has grown that program to over 70 students!
Because I have a personal relationship with these groups, and because I am a musician myself, I understand what an incredible jewel our music programs are. My understanding of what has gone into the development of these programs far exceeds the pedestrian.
Here is a shortened list of professional musicians and educators our district has produced. This list is in no way comprehensive. These people all surely had private instruction; but there is no doubt that the opportunity provided by the ESD for them to work in quality ensembles contributed to their success:
Neil Welch - saxophone artist
Dylan Welsh - guitarist and educator
Andrew Fox - composer and performer
Dylan Smith - college band instructor
Jay Roberts - professional guitarist and owner of Roberts Music Institute
Jeff Sizer - award winning composer and educator
Mercedes Paynter - bassist
Nico Hartikainen - grammy award winning producer
Stefan Van Sant - clarinetist
Hilary Johnson - vocal recording artist
Gabe Ferreira - clarinetist
Andrew Leonard - singer/actor/educator
Devon Yesberger - professional pianist and composer
Ehssan Karimi - percussionist who tours internationally
Elliot Gray - pianist and educator in Mill Creek
Cathy Baylor - pianist and educator in Lynnwood
Debra DeMiero - pianist and educator in Mountlake Terrace; theory professor at Edmonds Community College
Amy Stevenson - educator at Lynnwood High School
Charlotte Reese - educator at Edmonds Woodway High School
Dan Kramlich - pianist and professor at SPU
I ask for your vote so I can be there to make sure our music programs maintain their strength and integrity; so I can work to continue the job of those who have come before us in supporting and developing a program worthy of the pride of any community.
There are five people on the Edmonds School District School Board. Let's make sure one of them truly understands the ins and outs of our music programs.