School, as defined by Webster is “an organization that provides instruction: such as an institution for the teaching of children”. Well, Webster definitely didn’t quite have a definition that would fit everything that has come our way the past three months, but as always, music educators in the state of Alabama met it head-on and climbed every hill and mountain that was thrown at them on a weekly, daily and sometimes hourly basis. We have pulled together resources literally out of thin air at times and found ways to adapt what we do to educate our students. Music teachers have always seemed to be able to adapt to an ever-changing landscape and for that, you are to be commended. I think Walt Disney summed it up best, “The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing!” YOU formulated a plan of action and put it in motion. That’s what you’ve done for your students daily and I for one want to say Thank You for all the things that you do that go above and beyond to make sure that your students get the best experience possible.
As we have all said before, this year is going to be different, BUT don’t let different mean that you don’t give the best to your students and that you don’t take the time to recharge yourself professionally. The AMEA conference will have a different look, but there are some great clinics and performances planned for ABA that you won’t want to miss. The committee that selected clinics tried to make sure that we picked clinics that will inspire you and will give you what you need to help you right now. We had some outstanding clinics to choose from and because of the virtual format, we have 5 clinic spaces for this year’s conference. Make sure you take the time to renew your NAFME membership now and then register for the conference!!
The ABA membership approved the recent legislation allowing the ABA board, if needed, to move District Level All-State tryouts, Music Performance Assessment and Solo and Ensemble to virtual formats. We have two committees working right now on the Virtual All-State audition format and a committee working on what a Virtual MPA might look like if we have a situation like last Spring where schools are shut down, or schools possibly can’t travel. Both of these committees will present a final draft of their work to the ABA board for the board to consider. Our goal is to do everything in our power as a board for all of our events to happen in the second semester. This will just give us options on how these may occur during the pandemic.
At the Virtual AMEA conference, we will have two membership meetings. In the first, we will consider the legislation that was on the docket from the All-State meeting in April. You will find these online and we will email these back out to the membership. Also, the nominating committee is working to bring a slate of officers to you. According to the legislation we passed at AMEA last year, they will bring 2 candidates for each of the following offices: Vice President/President-Elect, Recording Secretary, and Jazz Vice Chairman. We will also take nominations from the floor. If you have someone you would like to nominate for any of these positions, contact any of the committee members – Chairman, Taylor Cash – Albertville High School, David Waters – Muscle Shoals High School, Michelle Gann – Gordo High School, LT Hughes – Robertsdale High School.
Stay strong!! This is your association. Let us all strive to make it better so that we can serve the students and the bands in our state better. We are ABA and together we CAN do great things!!