In recognition of Music in Our Schools Month, Advantage Charter Academy and Inspire Charter Academy came together for a joint performance during Baton Rouge’s annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade, also known as the “Wearin’ of the Green Parade.”
Sixth- through eighth-grade band members and cheerleaders from both schools marched in the parade as the only middle school band in attendance among high school and college bands. Inspire was first invited to participate in the parade four years ago, and they have been invited back every year since. This is the second year that Advantage has marched alongside Inspire in the annual parade.
“The students did an amazing job,” said David Moore, band director at Inspire. “These performances open up many doors for our scholars, such as being recruited to attend high schools with top-tier band programs, which will also open up doors to obtain music or band scholarships for college.”
Music in our Schools Month was founded by the National Association for Music Education. It celebrates and raises awareness about the importance of music education for all children. The month-long program provides music educators the opportunity to bring music programs to the attention of the community through creative activities and advocacy.
Moore worked with Justin Doherty, band director at Advantage, on selecting songs for the band to practice. Both schools practiced independently for approximately one month and then came together for a joint practice several days before the parade.
“Having music programs that provide these types of experiences are very important for our scholars because it gives them an opportunity to showcase their hard work and talents,” said Moore. “It also teaches them responsibility, keeps them focused, and builds their self-esteem.”