Fall is the season when millions of Americans go back to school for another year of education. Houston is home to numerous school districts across the 12-county metro area, it also is host to a number of different charter and private schools.
All of these schools require thousands of teachers and other educators to care for Houston’s students. Educator Sally Driver talks about becoming a band director in the Houston area and how it has impacted both her life and the lives of others.
What degree program did you study?
“I received a Bachelor of Music with EC-12 Texas Certification from Sam Houston State University.”
What does your current position entail?
“I am the Assistant Band Director at a middle school. I teach sectionals, all the beginner woodwinds (flute, clarinet, saxophone, etc), assist with the Symphonic Band and Concert II Band and direct the Concert I Band. I also teach a 45-minute advocacy period which is basically a study hall.”
Do you feel your education prepared you for your current role?
“I do not feel my education prepared me as well as it could have. I give joint blame to myself for not getting as much out of my classes as I could have and the school for not providing more functional instruction. If I were to do it again, I would look for more instruction on the practical aspects of teaching.”
Have you participated in any form of continuing education since beginning this position?
“I’ve attended TMEA (Texas Music Educators Association annual convention) and TBA a few times over the years. We also have district seminars from time to time.”
Do you have any advice for people who would be interested in pursuing a similar career?
“Talk to recent graduates of the schools you’re looking at attending. Find out how they feel about their education and their new lives as educators. Ask what they would have done differently – you may be able to make overall better decisions about your educational path based on what others have learned before you.”
Gillian Kruse is a freelance writer living in Houston. She graduated from Rice University with a great love for all performing and visual arts. She enjoys writing about arts and cultural events, especially little-known ones, to help Houstonians learn about what’s going on in their city. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.