HCPS Nationally Recognized for Musical Excellence for 8th Grade

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) — Whether in the music room or on stage, students in the city of Harrisonburg’s public school music programs are surrounded by constant opportunities to learn.

“You can enter as a ninth, 10th, 11th or 12th grader perhaps having never taken music lessons and you can start your journey to learn music literacy and music performance here and we think it’s one of the most special things we offer,” said JR Snow, Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator.

Staff members like Bethany Houff, who has been teaching music for nearly 20 years, says her students make it easy for her to love what she does every day.

“I can’t imagine being anywhere else. I love having students who are committed to excellence and I am so happy to be a part of that,” said Harrisonburg High School Choir Director Bethany Houff.

This excellence has been recognized for the eighth time by the National Association of Music Merchants as the best community for music education.

“It’s a testament to the consistency of K-12 music education we provide and the quality our teachers bring to the classroom for our students,” Snow added.

Students like 11th grade clarinetist Mikey Paniagua who says music brings camaraderie and sharpens his skills.

“I really like this kind of music that offers that, it’s kind of like a thing where you always want to improve and challenge yourself to do better and I think the music does that,” Paniagua said.

Standards-wise, for eighth grade at HCPS for music education, the song remains the same.

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