School district develops strings program, to include side-by-sides with Florida Orchestra

Posted on: September 18, 2017

“In a small portable classroom at Mitchell High School, a group of players tuned their stringed instruments,” writes Michele Miller in Friday’s (9/15) Tampa Bay Times (Florida). “The Mitchell High orchestra program is one of two new startups this year. The adjacent Seven Springs Middle School also is offering a feeder program…. Together, about 80 students have enrolled. Many of them have little or no experience with string instruments. It’s a trend-bucking, cobbled effort, made possible with modest funding from the Pasco County School District and a long-held desire of teachers and administrators to offer more opportunities in the arts…. The new orchestra programs are part of an overall push to expand the arts in Pasco schools, said Tom Viking, program coordinator for fine arts for Pasco County schools… The district has hired 11 new secondary music teachers this year…. Come October, Pasco County band and orchestra students can partake in a side-by-side music workshop with the Florida Orchestra, an experience Viking hopes will bring more community support and help expand the string program to other schools.”

Posted September 18, 2017