Band & Orchestra


• BAND & ORCHESTRA • All instrumental music students receive one 40-minute lesson each week.  Students are grouped according to their instrument and apptitude.  In preparation for concert performances, woodwind, brass and percussion students are grouped as an ensemble to form the Band.  To form the Orchestra, the String students are added to the Band.

Currently, our instrumental music program follows two kinds of schedules.  The first is a zero-period schedule. These lessons take place before the school day begins, before first period.  The second schedule is a rotation-pull-out schedule.  These lessons take place during the school day.  Each week, students are pulled from a different class in the rotation so that the impact on core-subject area work is minimal.  Approximately 25% of our student body actively participates in Band & Orchestra.

  • Ms. Strauli teaches flute, clarinet, saxophone, percussion, voice and piano.
  • Mr. Johnson teaches violin, viola, cello, string bass, trumpet, trombone, tuba and guitar.




Award Given by the VH1 Save The Music Foundation and Presented During American Association of School Administrator’s 140th National Conference on Education

Tampa, Fl, February 17, 2008 – Richard Kaplan, superintendent of the New Brunswick (N.J.) Public Schools, has been named the recipient of the fourth annual Administrator Award for Distinguished Support of Music Education. Kaplan was chosen for his commitment to ensuring that music education is part of the core curriculum in all public schools throughout New Brunswick, New Jersey.

The award is sponsored by the VH1 Save The Music Foundation and will be given on February. 17, 2008, at the general session of the American Association of School Administrator's (AASA) 140th National Conference on Education in Tampa, Florida.  The award is presented each year at AASA's national conference to one superintendent or school CEO who has exhibited outstanding commitment to restoring music education in his or her school district.  Past recipients include: Duncan N. P. "Pat" Pritchett Jr., past superintendent of the Indianapolis Public Schools; Dr. John Lange, superintendent of Adams County School District 14; and Dr. Carol Johnson, past superintendent of the Memphis City Schools and current superintendent of the Boston Public Schools.

Kaplan became superintendent of the New Brunswick Public Schools in 2004. Under his leadership, a comprehensive plan was developed to ensure that all students throughout the New Brunswick School District would receive access to the benefits of music education. The plan was developed to provide all children with general music instruction through grade 8 and provide access to instrumental music instruction beginning in grades four and continuing to grade twelve.   Through Kaplan’s encouragement and support, a music education curriculum was developed and implemented in all elementary schools and the district’s middle school. In just three years, the instrumental music program has grown from 200 students to more than 800 students. All elementary and middle schools in the New Brunswick School District have both a string and band program. Plans for a high school band program are underway for the 2008-09 school year.

Research literature well documents that youngsters exposed to the structure of music perform better in math, science and language art,” said Kaplan. “Since revitalizing our music curriculum, we have seen our students become more engaged in school.

“Since 2006, the VH1 Save The Music Foundation and local partner Cablevision has provided eight New Brunswick Public Schools with $230,000.00 worth of new musical instruments to jumpstart the district’s instrumental music programs. The success of the programs has been maintained by the continued support of Superintendent Kaplan. 

“Mr. Kaplan’s commitment to music education programs throughout the New Brunswick Public Schools truly embodies the intent of this award,” said Paul Cothran, VH1 Save The Music Foundation executive director.  “Each New Brunswick student that is affected by the benefits of music is a testament to his commitment to music education.”

“AASA is proud to honor Mr. Kaplan for his commitment to music education in the New Brunswick Public Schools," said Paul D. Houston, AASA executive director. "Music education is such an important part of the K-12 educational experience. In the current era of test-based school reform, creative activities such as music education are being squeezed out of the curriculum at schools nationwide. Providing a strong music education program is an important component in giving our children the skills they need to succeed in life, not just succeed on tests.

“Research consistently shows that musical study develops critical thinking and self discipline skills and improves a child's early cognitive development, basic math and reading abilities, self-esteem, SAT scores, ability to work in teams, spatial reasoning skills and school attendance.  Researchers have also found that children involved with music education are more likely to graduate from high school and attend college and are less likely to be involved with gangs and substance abuse.

About AASA
AASA (, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders across the United States. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. AASA’s major focus is standing up for public education.

About VH1 Save The MusicSince VH1 Save The Music was created in 1997, more than $40 million worth of new musical instruments has been donated to 1,500 public schools in 100 communities, improving the lives of more than 1 million children. VH1 Save The Music’s many honors include the Governors’ Award (a special Emmy Award), the George Foster Peabody Award for broadcast and cable excellence, and many Beacon Awards.