PMEA grants the award annually to chief school administrators who recognize the importance of music and the arts in their school district’s curriculum. Dr. Huesken has served as superintendent of the Conestoga Valley School District since July of 1998. His education includes undergraduate work at Susquehanna University, graduate work at the University of Pennsylvania and an Ed.D from Conestoga Valley School District offers a comprehensive music program, run by a staff of eleven full- time certified music educators. Several of the classroom music teachers are also Orff certified and have utilized Orff instrumentation in their teaching, as well as world drumming and the use of ukuleles. Performing groups and course offerings include instrumental and choral programs (which have experienced growth both in ensembles and classes), jazz band, Orff ensemble, percussion ensemble and a Ukulele club.
Conestoga Valley has been recognized by the NAMM Foundation as one of its “Best Communities for Music Education” for multiple years. The school district also requires its students to complete one music course in order to receive their high school diploma.
The music department has continued to have a generous allocation of funds despite economic strains. “During the economic downturn, starting in 2008, Conestoga Valley was able to maintain the music staff and continue to support the music program financially. Without the leadership and collaboration between superintendent and school board, these types of things do not happen. Many other districts saw programs completely downsized or even cut during this time. Conestoga Valley has flourished with its’ programs growing in terms of students participating. This only happens when a district commits resources to make it happen.” shared Brandon Nase, Conestoga Valley Middle School Instrumental Music.
Colleagues praise their superintendent for his dedication to music and the arts in the school district. “In recent years, Dr. Huesken supported the addition of the guitar program to the high school music curriculum. Additionally, a dedicated room with music technology was added to the high school music department with the most recent renovation project. Thousands of students benefitted from these offerings.” writes nominator Elizabeth Carney, vocal music educator, Conestoga Valley High School.
PMEA is pleased to recognize Dr. Gerald Huesken’s invaluable contributions to and support for the music program in his school district with the 2015 Outstanding Superintendent Award.
PMEA is a service organization to music education in the state of Pennsylvania. The present membership of over 4,200 evolved from a small group of band directors dating from 1933. Today, the organization includes those engaged in music instruction at all levels, from preschool through college and university, as well as those in music industry, merchandising and publishing. PMEA provides leadership in professional growth and offers special opportunities for music development to school students. PMEA is affiliated with the National Association for Music Education (NAfME). For more information, please contact Abi Young at firstname.lastname@example.org