Joni Perez: Engaging Student Leadership and Online Sectionals when Schools Shut Down
I recently had the opportunity to talk with Joni Perez, Band Director at The Woodlands HS (TX). The band program at The Woodlands High School is widely recognized as a top high school band program, having received national recognition both on the field and in the concert hall. In our conversation, we discussed the challenges she and her team are facing now that the the school has shut down due to the Corona Virus - a challenge directors across the US are having to deal with in the wake of the pandemic. I asked Joni how she and her team are working to maintain a high level of success when circumstances seem to be holding back the momentum of the band program.
In this interview she discusses how her team was quick to respond to the crisis and develop a plan to forge forward. She offers advice on using student leadership to help in the situation and how online sectionals can be used to mitigate the impact of not being able to rehearse as full band.
I know that every band program is unique and each band director is facing unique problems. There is no one solution to the problems all of us face; however, I hope this will be a catalyst for thinking about ways you can develop a meaningful online experience for your students.
Here's the interview: