Seven schools have already benefitted from new instruments, which don't come cheap, according to Ralph McIntosh, arts education co-ordinator. In order to help cover these costs and allow more students to benefit, the board has been hosting an international benefit dinner for the past two years.
On April 21, the gala dinner Music Makes the World Go Round brought in about $10,000, McIntosh said. Nearly 150 people from Greater Sudbury took part in the evening, which included a foreign menu, as well as entertainment by local high school students.
The JMMT was established in 2008, under the direction of Lionel Rudd. Since Joan Mantle was a secondary school music teacher, funds have been directed at high schools.
“This ensures that there is a tangible improvement in the condition of equipment in an entire department, allowing for students to achieve more in their musical studies together,” a media release from the board stated.
Mantle joined the Sudbury Board of Education in 1964 to teach math and science at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School. There, principal Bruce Elliot realized her extensive background in music and invited her to establish a music program at the school. She gladly accepted and planted the seeds for what continues to be a hallmark of education at Lo-Ellen Park.
Two years later, Lasalle Secondary School came calling and recruited her to head the music department. She taught music at Lasalle Secondary School for 15 successful years. The bands under her stewardship garnered numerous awards.
In 1981, Mantle was named vice-principal of Lasalle Secondary School, where music continued to flourish. She returned to Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School as principal in 1985, where she remained for seven years. She then became Principal of Sudbury Secondary School where she was an ambassador par excellence for the Performing Arts Program.
Once every secondary school in the board has received two helpings of donations, McIntosh said there are talks of assisting elementary schools.
Whenever a school receives funding, they are required to host a community show, to help supplement the fund. Other musical endeavours, like the JazzWorkz series and Guitars Alive, have also jumped on board to put on shows where partial proceeds go to the fund. Bela Ravi has also been instrumental in the development of the fund.
For more information about the fund, visit rainbowschools.ca.
Posted by Arron Pickard