District 204 School Board

The main focus of the recent District 204 meeting was the possible redesign to the district’s music instrument education.

Currently, students are given the opportunity to start a band or orchestra instrument in fifth grade.

Rehearsals are only twice a week, once in a large group setting, then in a smaller group; which they are pulled from a core class to be a part of. Shifting the program to sixth grade will allow students to receive daily instruction.

Daily class time would mean more consistent instruction and allows for teachers to best meet the needs of every individual student.

But many District 204 parents disagree.

“While I appreciate what you’re trying to do, you are missing a crucial cut off by starting children in fifth grade,” said, Michelle Harms.

“Technically, if these kids start in sixth grade they will have six years of experience when they graduate high school and they will be at a disadvantage with they go against kids with more experience for scholarships,” said Allen Hanapel.

Music department chairs insist the change will sustain the districts high quality music program and retain more students.

The change will be implemented during the 2014-2015 school year.

The board also passed their previously proposed tax levy increase of 3.2 %, making it the third lowest tax levy increase in the district’s history.

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