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Music teachers meet at picnic

by Teri Vance, Appeal Staff Writer

With several new additions to Carson City’s school music program, teachers are finding ways to harmonize.

New hires and veteran directors met one another during a barbecue hosted by Richard and Carol Doede recently as a prelude to starting school.

The idea struck a chord with Jeanne Hanson, who has taught music at Fritsch Elementary School for 10 years.

“We all need to work together when we get our programs going,” she said. “We should get to know each other and see what we can do to help each other.”

Mark Wurtzel considered the barbecue a high note after leaving his home in New York to teach music at Bordewich-Bray Elementary School.

“This is great, especially for someone who came all the way across the country,” he said. “It gives me a chance to meet new people, learn and have a good time.”

New teachers looked for direction from the veterans. And experienced teachers tooted the horns of the newcomers.

“There’s some great potential here,” said Mary Law, who has taught music at Seeliger Elementary School for 11 years. She also sat on the hiring committees for many of the new hires. “I’m looking forward to seeing what they will bring to the district. I’m anxious for their new ideas — a breath of fresh air.”

Christina O’Neil, Empire Elementary School’s new music teacher, said music is an essential part of a balanced education.

“It gives the students a non-violent outlet for their emotions,” she said. “In addition to that, it gives them a sense of unity and team building.”

After spending the evening with the teachers, Carol Doede, who retired last year from teaching music in the school district, gave her endorsement.

“I think the program is going to be very successful,” she said.