Training SpEd Teachers at Wegeforth
Dear Friends of Special Learners and Music,
Thanks for staying with us in the endeavor to include ALL students in music making. There might be so much good news to share that we'd run out of room telling you about it all this Fall. To keep this report short. we will focused on the way forward! Because you gave and supported the birth of this work, we have been able to show the value of it to foundations and get more support. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving this initiative its foundation.
As you know, last July, GITC trained 45 special educators and paraprofessionals to adapt music at our first Adaptive Music Conference for Special Education. Thanks to the NAMM Foundation and Museum of Making Music for hosting this!
Based on an outpouring of gratitude and enthusiasm from participants, GITC applied for three grants to carry this work forward over the next two years. We requested support to advance musical inclusion in 2018-19 from Qualcomm Charitable Giving, the Nordson Foundation and from the National Endowment for the Arts for 2019-20. Our goal is to fully develop this approach here in San Diego, then create pathways to share it with educators nationally.
We created a name for the project, "AMASE" which stands for Adaptive Music for Achievement in Special Education. The awesome SpEd leaders from our lab at Euclid Elementary- Val Simons, Tony Nguyen and Lisa Winkless helped create the pitch deck and our staff member, Gail Wingfield has edited and beatified it. It is attached to this report for you! We hope you enjoy it. Board president Scott Fischel and Classroom Angel, Eric VanBuhler supported me to make the first pitch at Qualcomm. Then the Steve and Karen des Jardins helped us prepare to meet with the grant committee at Nordson. It truly took a village to get the work this far! Thanks to each of you who has helped.
In October, both Qualcomm Charitable Giving and the Nordson Foundation voted to award GITC funds that will support us to offer a second training to participating SpEd faculty, and to hold a third Adaptive Music Conference in the summer to welcome another 45 teachers to this work! You can see the big plan in the deck. (We won't know about the outcome of our NEA grant application until next June.) Our focus is provide training and instrument support to every interested SpEd teacher in our local school districts (San Diego County Schools and San Diego Unified Schools). By helping here first, we can create a destination others can visit, and where we can constantly observe and assess the effort.
In the meantime, Behavioral Specialist, Desiree Cera has joined our faculty this autumn. She is bringing her expertise in music, psychology and behavioral strategies to this work at a high level and already has some very moving stories to tell. Our forthcoming newsletter features a story on Desiree and her work with GITC at Wegeforth Elementary. This includes photos and videos, too! If you wish to see the article, you can read it as a blog at our website, and please feel free to register to get our monthly enewsletter here if you are interested.
We look forward to keeping you in the loop as the next trainings take shape. We welcome your input anytime! Let's make this an extraordinary year together so special learners can express themselves in a new way, surpass expectations, and show the world their beauty through music.
Thank you for being our partner for the kids. We hope you will keep this project in mind if you donate on November 27th during GlobalGiving.org's awesome matching and bonus opportunities on Giving Tuesday!
With you, in service,