Monson-Sultana

F93_school_monson

Program Descriptors:

  • Traditional school
  • Rural
  • Elementary
  • Music
  • Standards-based curriculum
  • Instructional methodology
  • Funding

In 1994, the new superintendent, Mr. Tom Giampietro, saw that the band program was less than satisfactory for this small school district. What it needed was a music program that involved all students. He asked the school board for a credentialed music instructor, funded out of general funds, and abandoned the idea of having a marching band. The board granted him his request (he could have hired a vice-principal). Since that time, the culture of the school has changed completely. Miss Mary Pauls, the certificated music teacher, has implemented a K-8 program that involves every child. It used to be that you were a nerd if you were in music. Now it is the thing to do. The community and board are very proud of their music program and of their school because the children have learned discipline and commitment, the school has become a magnet for the Tulare County area, and test scores have risen each year since the testing and accountability measures have been put into place. This rural school of 80% Hispanic students and 78% free lunch has made a name for itself in the county. The children have won honors and awards in music locally, and at the state and national levels, as well as from their parents. It takes four performances in the multi-purpose room to accommodate all those who want to see and hear the students perform. Dinuba High School especially appreciates the preparation these students have as they advance into high school music.

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