A Note From Mr. Magee:
July, 27, 2020
Dear Pride of Colgan Family,
The past few days have provided some clarity, regarding our upcoming season and I am now in the position to give you more details and direction, about where we are and what marching band will be this fall.
First, I want to provide some information regarding the underlying decisions that have been made, to finally provide us with a clearer picture of the fall. Last week, VHSL - the board that governs HS athletics in VA - announced that football would not be played in VA this fall. They will be making an announcement on July 27th, outlining how the state will proceed with scheduling athletic seasons for the 2020-2021 school year. This may include shifting the "fall" sports to the late winter/early spring time frame. On the same day last week, the PWCS School Board announced that we will begin the school year in virtual instruction, and hope to begin in-person instruction in the second marking period (starting Nov. 2nd). This decision also delays the start of the virtual school year to Sept. 8th for students. Wednesday morning, VBODA announced that there will be no marching assessment during the 2020-2021 school year.
With no pending events remaining on our calendars, we will be postponing all marching band related activities until at least the beginning of in-person instruction. I know this is a huge disappointment. I will not be assigning "virtual marching band" assignments to you. We all know that marching band is so much more than just band with drill sets. The social and peer group component of this activity cannot be overstated for our membership. With all of this in mind, I will be asking each of you to think about ways we can keep marching band a part of your band experience this year and the seniors have already done so. There are of course many "nuts and bolts" details we can work on, as we move through the year, but I am looking for much more than "just training for the fall of 2021". That would be a disservice to our seniors. You should also know that the band directors in the county are working together, to try to come up with plans that will ensure all band students in the county have the opportunity to enjoy - in at least some form - the activity which has come to mean so much to our members, families and communities.
I know this is not the news you were hoping to hear. From a personal perspective, I am still trying to wrap my head around the fact that this will be the first fall since 1976 that I have not been involved in marching band activities. I very much look forward to creating experiences together this year, that will allow us to keep building on the pride and excitement, and success we have established at Colgan High School.
That is all for now. Please know I miss you with all my heart. Stay healthy!
July 6, 2020
Hi Band Families,
I hope this finds you enjoying a safe and healthy “staycation”. I know we are all eager to get back to “normal” as soon as we can and I remind you that following guidelines regarding health is the surest way to make that happen. I know people at the county and state level are working hard every day to provide the best, safest start to the school year possible. As you know, the staff, student leaders, and I have been working on several plans to fit whatever circumstances are thrown at us. The board of education plans to make a decision soon and announce it 7/15. The VHSL meets again on 7/23 to discuss fall sports. After those two things we announce our plan for the fall.
There will be marching band in some form. It is a class. The class will run. You will get credit.
What can students do in the meantime?
-practice the music for this year's show. If we can’t do it this year, we’ll be great at it next year. We can even do a preview of it next Spring including the Class of ’21!
-let Mr. Magee know right now if you need a school instrument to practice
-stay/get in shape. Marching Band is not a sport but it is athletic. Be in camp shape even if we don’t have camp.
-follow the rules and stay healthy. If we get sick, we can’t have school.
What can parents do in the meantime?
-fill out all the google forms. They are available at www.colganband.com
-pay the deposit. I know there have been some issues with Charms but we think we have them worked out. The deposit is how much marching band will cost us no matter how much we do. We won’t ask for more unless we can do more.
-ask questions. Mr. Magee is good with email. (usually)
-encourage you child to practice. Learning and playing an instrument is one of the best brain building activities there is. Practicing will keep students brains sharp and reduce “learning loss” that might occur given our extended time out of the classroom. I’m not kidding, there have been hundreds of studies on this!
I miss you all more every day.
Dear Band Family,
First and foremost, I hope this finds you all healthy. I wanted to give you some information on how we’ll proceed while we’re out of school.
The most important thing I can stress to you is that our number one goal during this time is to have fun with music and maybe get better and learn some new things. No one should be concerned with grades.
Teachers were given some guidance today and next week you’ll start to see more from them. Your teachers are going to get creative and you’re going to love it. They’ll be helping you love their subject, not giving graded assignments or tests.
My current plan is to use the band website Colganband.com to help you find ways to keep playing and learning. I understand that many of you don’t even have your instruments at home and I’ve asked if there’s a plan for that.
For those who have their instruments, keep them handy. If you have a stand for it, leave it there. If not, leave your case open. You’re more likely to play if you see your lonely instrument. Do the fundamentals…breathe, sing, play! All you need is a metronome and something that plays an F and you can do it. Better yet, dress up like me and make a video of yourself leading the warmups. Your friends will love it! I’ll tweet it!
Mr. Mills is working on a way to put all the free stuff you can do in one place. He’s cool. As a starter, did you know Sight Reading Factory and SMARTmusic are offering fee subscriptions? If you’re playing a solo from one of our books, the accompaniment is probably there!
Look for stuff to roll out next week.
Any time any student or parent wants to reach out, I’ll be checking email all the time. You know how I like the twitter @colganband
Use music to relieve some stress. Get creative. Have fun. Love each other.
(Updates will be found on the webpage under the "From the Director" tab as they become available.)
We will be changing our marching shoes this fall all due to many students having issues with the quality of the last shoes. Take a look at your current marching shoes to see if you will need to replace them when you place your uniform orders.
The new shoes are a different brand so students will need to try on a sizing shoe before ordering.
Spirit Wear Store OPEN.
Questions can go to: PrideSpiritWear@gmail.com
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