NAfME announced that Alison Miles, Band Director at Fabius-Pompey Middle/High School, is the recipient of the 2023 George N. Parks Award for Leadership in Music Education. Miles was presented the award during the Music for All Future Music Educators' Experience event in Indianapolis, Indiana, on November 11, 2023.
RESTON, Va., Nov. 13, 2023 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- The National Association for Music Education (NAfME) announced that Alison Miles, Band Director at Fabius-Pompey Middle/High School, is the recipient of the 2023 George N. Parks Award for Leadership in Music Education. Miles was presented the award during the Music for All Future Music Educators' Experience event in Indianapolis, Indiana, on November 11, 2023.
The George N. Parks Award honors an exemplary music educator who embodies the characteristics and leadership that Mr. Parks showed his students every day. The recipient must have a collaborative spirit, dedication to knowing the students as people, perseverance and enthusiasm, and an ability to instill qualities in students beyond musical achievement.
"On behalf of the NAfME National Executive Board," stated NAfME President Scott R. Sheehan, "I offer our collective congratulations to Alison Miles on the distinct honor of receiving the George N. Parks Leadership in Music Education Award. The impact that Ms. Miles has made on our profession and on her students throughout her career is to be commended. Additionally, we applaud her efforts in raising awareness and amplifying the opportunities for musical growth and success in small schools. Her commitment to this work is paramount as we continue to increase our capacity to advocate for equitable access to music education for every student."
Alison Miles has worked for the Fabius-Pompey Central School District in New York for the past 17 years. She serves as the middle school director, conducts the 5th grade band, middle school band, jazz band, and teaches lessons for grades 5–8. During her tenure, Miles has served in a variety of capacities as band director and teaching general music. Her bands have consistently received gold ratings at more than ten festivals, and her students participate in multiple NYSSMA (New York State School Music Association) events including Solo Festival, Area All-State, and Conference All-State. Alison was the recipient of the 2023 CiTi Arts in Education's Innovation in Education award and has presented at the NYSSMA conference.
Miles earned her bachelors and Master's in Music Education from SUNY Fredonia and a Bachelor's in Music Performance on oboe. In addition to teaching, Miles is a dedicated musician, playing the oboe and English Horn for Central Winds, A Music Educator's Wind Ensemble in Central New York. She has had the opportunity to perform at both the Midwest Clinic and at the TBA (Texas Bandmasters Association) Convention. Miles's love for performance sets her apart in her success as a teacher.
Miles strives to include all students who have an interest in band and works diligently to provide opportunities to allow success at every level. While at Fabius-Pompey, she has built an instrument inventory permitting easier instrument access giving every student the opportunity to be a member of the band. This dedication has been a critical component to the instrumental program, which has successfully retained more than 40% of the student body as members of the band.
"Alison has found creative ways to ensure that every child who wants to be in band, is in band," shared elementary music educator Kate Hale.
"The students in Alison's groups come to the band room every day and feel a sense of community," added Kristen Kasky, 6th Grade/High School Band Director at Fabius-Pompey Middle/High School. "They know that in the band room they are safe to be themselves without fear of ostracization or bullying from their peers. . . . Alison teaches her students how to be responsible individuals who are accepting of others, regardless of their race, gender identity, or sexual orientation. Her students come to band excited and ready to put their best effort into the rehearsal every day, and it shows when her groups perform at concerts and competitions."
"Alison's dedication to her profession was especially evident during the COVID pandemic," shared Patty Feeney, Fabius-Pompey Middle-High School Nurse. "She worked tirelessly to ensure that all of her students were able to achieve their academic goals despite the many limitations that the pandemic created."
Feeney spotlighted how Miles mentored several new teachers, "guiding them through the school year while maintaining the outstanding music program that the Fabius-Pompey School District has been known for. . . Alison's advocacy for small schools on the county level has had a profound impact on our school," Feeney continued. "The information and opportunities that she is able to share with our students had provided numerous experiences for the school community."
"I am personally grateful to Alison for her involvement with my own children who were members of the Fabius-Pompey music program," Feeney added. "The importance of hard work, commitment, and responsibility that she instilled in them as members of the Fabius-Pompey Bands has helped them as they pursue their future careers."
Developed by NAfME and Music for All, the award is named for George N. Parks (1953–2010), director of the University of Massachusetts Minuteman Marching Band at the University of Massachusetts Amherst from 1977 until his death. Considered a national authority on drum majoring, he led the George N. Parks Drum Major Academy®, a summer workshop program for high school drum majors. View past recipients here.
The National Association for Music Education (NAfME) is a collaborative community that supports music educators and advocates for equitable access to music education. The only association that addresses all aspects of music education, NAfME, together with its affiliated state music education associations, advocates at the national, state, and local levels and provides resources and opportunities for teachers, students, parents, and administrators. Founded in 1907 and representing more than 57,000 members teaching millions of students, NAfME advances the music education profession and promotes lifelong experiences in music.
Follow NAfME on Twitter, Instagram, and on Facebook @NAfME. For additional information, contact Catherina Hurlburt at [email protected] or 571-323-3395.
SOURCE National Association for Music Education