St. Gregory the Great Catholic School Strengthens Music Program with new Casio CT-S1 Keyboards

SBO Staff • News • November 5, 2021

Since its founding in 2009, St. Gregory the Great Catholic School has remained steadfast in its mission to foster Christian values, inspire academic excellence and encourage global awareness through service to others.

In recent months, the San Diego school has also significantly expanded its commitment to music education, working to bring a full complement of music appreciation, music application, music theory and performance offerings to bear on its 240 kinder to eighth-grade students.

The school made a quantum leap in realizing its goal when school officials gave the green light to its new music teacher, Frank Amador, to build a dream music lab consisting of guitars, bass, drum set, ukuleles and hand percussion instruments, along with a centerpiece of 30 Casio CT-S1portable keyboards and a Casio PX-S1000 keyboard.

Compact in size, the new 61-key CT-S1 keyboards provided for a clean, streamlined installation, enabling many instruments to be placed in rows in the classroom, leaving plenty of room for Amador to navigate aisles and to better reach students.

For Amador, it was the Casio keyboards’ simplicity of operation, stunningly realistic sound and portability—they can be used with batteries to allow students to take them outside for a change of scenery and inspiration—that ultimately helped him make his final decision.

“These new Casio keyboards were the perfect choice for us, as they provide the best tools for our students,” says Amador. “I received initial input from my go-to consultant, J&E Pro Audio, who said they couldn’t wait to share with me how great these keyboards sound. I knew right away that they would go a long way in helping St. Gregory inspire its students to find joy in making music.”

Amador has long held a deep passion for teaching music, having earned a stellar reputation among students in the region over the past 30 years.

This past August, he was invited to teach at St. Gregory the Great Catholic School by the school’s principal, Maeve O’Connell. He says that his decision to join St. Gregory was life affirming, citing the school’s positive atmosphere, O’Connell’s strong vision for student and parent success, and the high degree of trust and encouragement from the school’s board, all of which combine to make St. Gregory one of the finest schools in the region.

Before he arrived, the school’s music program had relied on the expected complement of beginning recorders.

“Maeve and the school board showed immense support for the music program, sharing their desire to create the absolute best learning experience for our students,” said Amador.

“Following the challenges of the pandemic, it was a true blessing to revive our Music Program this year, and the generous support of our school parents made the purchase of the Casio Music Lab possible,” said O’Connell. “Frank is an incredible addition to our staff, inspiring a joy and love of music in all our students, K-Grade 8.

Our school’s philosophy centers around the development of the whole child, and our Music Lab provides the opportunity for every student to explore and develop their love of music. Within a few short months, we have heard such growth and seen such passion among our students as they praise God by developing their musical gifts and talents. Long may it continue!”

The new Casio Music Lab has opened so many new possibilities for the program, notes Amador.

“My students love that they can practice their keyboards in the privacy of their own headphones, as I watch them to make sure they are all making progress. At a certain point, I ask them to take off their headphones, and to select a keyboard instrument sound, such as bass, guitar, drums or strings. Within no time, I have them playing “Ode to Joy” or “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” as a keyboard symphony! That’s what it’s all about: making music together.”

Adds Amador, “Success is when a child looks at me with a big old smile and says, ‘I got it!’ Music brings out the best in children and these Casio keyboards offer a highly affordable way to bring keyboards into the music curriculum. Schools everywhere should be doing this.”

To learn more about St. Gregory the Great Catholic School, please visit To learn more about Casio’s full portfolio of electronic musical instruments, please visit

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