I teach in a large, ethnically diverse, urban high school in the Midwest. Many students come from single-parent homes. A majority qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. As adolescents, the students ironically exhibit both high energy and fatigue. They may have reached the upper grades with learning deficiencies or they may be gifted and talented. We have a wide variety.
As a school, we are implementing positive behavioral intervention and support (PBIS) programs.
We are experiencing many gains but still have some work to do on closing the achievement gap and raising competency levels. Unemployment, language barriers, and cultural differences may cause some of our families to undervalue traditional education.
The teachers act like mentors and supply classroom materials and other assistance to help students. We do good work and are committed to our students. Budget crunching coupled with deflated tax support has delayed purchasing of new equipment. Our building is 75+ years old.
Sound systems have evolved and changed to meet the needs of vocal ensembles. Wireless microphones have become the aesthetic choice to allow for mobility and a cleaner looking stage. However, when one takes their ensemble into a larger location (for example, a graduation in a field house) the wireless microphones can cut in and out or fail completely due to crowd/cell phone interference.
Can you imagine working on a piece of music for nearly two months, only to have the microphones fail?
How disappointing! But this exact challenge happened last year. We had four wired area microphones that picked up the ensemble, but our soloists were using wireless microphones and could not be heard. What a nightmare for the seniors standing in front of a packed field house.
Going into our final concert/graduation season, I wish to provide two wired solo microphones (Shure SM87A Beta) for our soloists to have the security of knowing they can be heard.
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