Keep the music playing in Terrace

Coast Mountains can be justly proud of the commitment both teachers and students have made to music education.

An open letter to:

Ms. Nancy Wells,

Superintendent of Schools,

Coast Mountains School District 82

Dear Ms. Wells:

For the past 3 years I have been one of the workshop clinicians for the Dare To Dream Foundation Elementary Band Retreat. I am so impressed by what the music teachers of your school district are doing to provide quality music instruction to your students, Grade 6-12.

Coast Mountains can be justly proud of the commitment both your teachers and students have made to music education.

The students are not only learning how to play an instrument, but more importantly are learning life skills.

These life skills include discipline, team work, responsibility, confidence and appreciation of the artistic and aesthetic aspects of an intelligent culture. They are learning life skills that these young people will carry with them for the rest of their lives as they mature and become responsible citizens of our country.

Coast Mountains is very fortunate to have a group of “angels” called the Dare to Dream Foundation who eight years ago volunteered their time, effort and money to ensure that students in your school district would not be denied getting an instrumental music education from Grade Six and up.

This foundation is unique and in my 45 years of being involved in music education in B.C., I cannot think of another school district that has such a group of supporting “angels” that realize the value of young people receiving an instrumental music education.

I urge all members of the Coast Mountains board and administration to continue the very fine programme of instrumental music instruction from Grade 6-12.

Please do not deny your students the opportunity of receiving qualified music instruction as part of their curricular studies.

Be proud of the high standards of instruction that your specialist music teachers have provided, along with the support that has been ongoing from the Dare to Dream Foundation. I trust that we can look forward to many more years of music growth and development and that the Coast Mountains school district will continue to be a leader in this province in music education.

Peter B. Stigings,

Past President, BC Music Educators’ Association,

Faculty Advisor, UBC, Faculty of Education