Welcome Back to School!

Thomas Palmatier • ChoralPerspectiveSeptember 2022 • September 5, 2022

As I talk with music educators around the country, an increasing number of you are being called upon to teach outside of the “comfort zone” you had coming out of college. Most of us graduated with an expectation of being a band director, orchestra director, or choral director, and many saw ourselves as even more specialized in marching band, jazz band, or musical theater. Today’s reality is you teach band, orchestra, chorus, guitar, keyboard, modern band, and direct the musical. In other words, we teach music in all its forms. Now, we can bemoan this development or look at it as another way to excel!

SBO has been your go-to source for relevant information for teaching band and orchestra for years. In this issue we broaden our focus to include articles and products relevant to teachers of jazz groups. In next month’s issue, we’ll announce an exciting new development to enable us to serve you even better (still free of charge!). 

As you start the new school year, this issue of SBO offers you two articles to help you become a Music Education Superhero. You gaze into the mirror, and you see an inspirational teacher, a gifted musician, and an expert pedagogue. Your classes, rehearsals, and performances are changing students’ lives. You are awesome! But if no one else knows it, how effective can you be?  Rick Ghinelli, a longtime music educator and administrator and currently a Conn-Selmer educational support manager provides a guide to improve your communication with administrators. Then, regular SBO contributor Laurie Schell helps you become an expert strategic communicator whether at the local, regional, or national level. Get ready to leap tall buildings in a single bound! BTW – if that phrase means nothing to you, simply sigh and say, “OK, Boomer.”

I regularly teach in music classrooms around the Denver area, especially in the mountain towns to the west. The district I teach in just approved a substantial pay increase for all its teachers and added professional development days. Let’s hope this is not an isolated case and all educators’ compensation will grow to match their incredible worth.

Tom Palmatier
Editor-in-Chief, SBO


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