At a recent CMA Board-hosted Music Teacher of Excellence event in Nashville, Tennessee, 50 local music teachers were honored for their dedication to their students, commitment to teaching and their undeniable role in enriching the community and their individual schools.
Each Teacher of Excellence received a $2,000 grant from the CMA Foundation.
“Purchasing instruments has been central to the mission of the Foundation, but rewarding teachers provides the motivation and encouragement necessary to have a dynamic, sustainable music program in Nashville and other cities,” Joe Galante, Chairman of the CMA Foundation Board of Directors, said in a press release.
The inaugural CMA Music Teacher of Excellence honors was hosted by CMA Award-winner Brett Eldredge, who is also a member of the CMA Board of Directors.
During the ceremony, Brett’s own childhood music teacher, Judy Carroll, made a special appearance.
“Everyone needs somebody to help guide you along. Someone that sees the talent in you, that believes,” said Brett. “There are so many schools that don’t have music programs and that is why I’m so passionate about this, because some kids may not have their Judy Carroll, or their mentor, or the person that helps them along. Kids should never be without the option to have music in their lives.”
Judy is a 27-year veteran music educator, having taught voice and choral programs at various elementary and middle schools.
“As a music educator, I feel very strongly about the importance of quality music education in our schools,” said Judy. “It’s a necessity. It’s vital to the development of our children cognitively, emotionally, and socially. The CMA Foundation making these donations to music education in our schools is wonderful. All the hard work and time that you spend, you hope that someone will get the music bug and all your hard work has paid off. It’s very special for me to attend, but especially those 50 teachers that are being honored have to be very proud, and I’m very proud.”
The $100,000 in teacher grants comes from the CMA Foundation’s $1 million donation to Metro Nashville Public Schools, which brings giving to the school system to $10 million in the past 10 years.