Welcome to the Los Alamitos Alliance for Arts Education. Our coalition of parents, school officials, arts organizations, community and business leaders are working to keep the arts in our local schools. Join us!

September 16, 2016
 This bio and photo are from the Oak Instrumental Music website: www.oakmusic.org
 
Robert Harrell was born and raised in Santa Barbara, California and was heavily                                        involved in the local music scene.  Besides receiving several acknowledgments                                                  of outstanding musicianship at Santa Barbara High School,  he was the solo  trumpet chair in the Monday Madness Big Band, and he played bass  professionally in local jazz groups and in the pit orchestra for several theater companies. He moved to Southern California for his undergraduate studies at Biola University. During his time at Biola he was a integral part of the music department, playing trumpet in the jazz ensemble, symphonic winds, brass ensemble, and brass quintet. He played both upright and electric bass for the jazz combo and vocal jazz group. He was the president and student conductor of the symphonic winds at Biola University, and he graduated in the Spring of 2015 with a bachelor's degree in Music Education, and then went on to complete his teaching credential that fall.
 
The first stop in his educational career was at Los Alamitos High School, as the director of the jazz and orchestra groups. He will never forget the rewarding time that he shared with the students and the achievements they accomplished that year. Robert has a passion for music and a passion for students, and he knows that music has the power to change lives. One of his biggest goals as an educator is to ignite the love for music inside each of his students, and to help them achieve whatever they set their hearts and minds to. Robert is grateful and honored to be at Oak Middle School. And most of all, he is excited to see the students at Oak bring music to life, because he is a firm believer that “when we create music, we create meaning.”
May 24, 2016
Each year, the Orange County Department of Education honors the outstanding arts educators throughout the county.  LAUSD is home to three of this year’s honorees.  McGaugh Art Teacher Terri Epps was given the additional award as the Teacher of the Year for Special Education.  The OCMAA awards ceremony took place May 4th at Segerstrom Center.  Congratulations all!
 
Terri Epps- Outstanding Arts Educator for Special Education.  
Special EducationTeacher of the Year  Award for 2016
 
Terri Epps is the art teacher at McGaugh Elementary School, where she includes the special education 

May 24, 2016

The Reflections Gallery presented by Los Alamitos PTA Council in March.  The 2015-16 theme is , "Let Your Imagination Fly!"  Over 200 entries from every school, representing every genre of arts:  dance choreography, film production, literature, music composition, visual art, photography.  Participation in the program is growing.  Weaver and McGaugh had more than 65 entries. 

As the nation's largest volunteer-run child advocacy organization, PTA supports arts education because it recognizes its immense value to our 

May 24, 2016
Mr. Justin Padilla will be leaving Oak MS in the fall, and assuming baton duties as LAHS Director of Jazz Bands and Orchestra.  In a preview, he accompanied the HS jazz bands to the Reno Jazz Festival this spring.  LAHS Jazz I took 2nd place honors in a highly competitive division.  Mr. Robert Harrell, currently interim Jazz & Orchestra Director at LAHS, will succeed Justin Padilla at Oak.  
 
Mr. Chuck Wackerman, the founder of jazz education in LAUSD, will end his tenure in the district in June.  In his 59 years with the district, he has served as music director at McGaugh, LAHS, and McAuliffe, to much acclaim.  He  is much respected and loved at Los Al.  The already highly decorated Mr. Wackerman was just awarded the 2016 Golden Oak Honorary Service Award by the PTA.
May 24, 2016
This is from Principal Amy Laughlin 's announcement in March 2016:
 
Sarah Sandvig has been teaching voice and piano since 1993. She received her Bachelors degree in Vocal Performance from UCLA, and her Masters degree in Music Education from CSULB.  Sarah has published 12 books which are currently being developed into apps available in the App Store and Google Play Store.  She is the recipient of the Outstanding Thesis Award from CSULB and has been recognized for her work with children with autism.  
 
Sarah was a music teacher in our District for 7 years before taking time off to teach private lessons and, more importantly, be mom to two current Lee Leopards!  Please help me welcome her to our FamLee!,
 
February 23, 2016
 
February started with the concerts for All District Band and All District Orchestra. Our high school, middle schools, and elementary school groups played to enthusiastic audiences.  You can see video clips of these, as well as some recent elementary grade performances, on the Alliance facebook page link below.
September 23, 2015

NATIONAL PTA

SEPTEMBER 9, 2015 BY 

Reflections Student Art by Vy Nguyen (Grade 5)

Reflections Student Art by Vy Nguyen (Grade 5)

Creating art is a valuable learning process. Artistic exploration and expression enhance and develop intellectual, social and physical skills.

When children express themselves through words, pictures, music, photography and other art forms, they grow intellectually. The National PTA Reflections program helps parents encourage and recognize the continuous self-discovery process of their children.

With art, children learn to analyze their thoughts, feelings and ideas; look at objects, people and experiences in a fresh and exciting way; and develop curiosity for the ideas and works of others.

There are four skills students demonstrate and enhance through their artwork in the Reflections program:

September 23, 2015

September 23, 2015

Ever wonder what National Endowment for the Arts staff actually think about the arts? While not everyone at the agency is an artist (though we do boast quite a few!), one thing's for sure--we all share a deep and abiding appreciation and understanding of how vitally important the arts are to the diverse people and communities that call the U.S. home. To paraphrase what more than one staffer said when we asked them to explain why they value the arts so highly, the arts matter because they help us to understand how we matter. Here's more...

“The arts matter because I learn something about people and places I would have never known otherwise. The arts make my brain and my heart stretch to make room for newness. Sometimes, parts of me are displaced and replaced by wiser stuff. And that’s a fine thing.” – Victoria Hutter

“Art matters because it illustrates the human experience—the wonder of it, the bewilderment of it, the whimsy of it, and so much more. We would not be connected so deeply without the existence of art.” – Kathleen Dinsmore

“The arts matter because they give us a mutual space where we can talk to one another about the 

April 27, 2015
 

In his current position as director of Instrumental Music at Los Alamitos High School, John Rush leads the Jazz I, II, and III bands, String Orchestra, Jazz Combos, and teaches AP Music Appreciation.  Under his leadership, the jazz program expanded to three bands.  This year’s experience at the competitive Reno Jazz Festival was especially successful, as each of his jazz performing groups placed in their respective divisions.

Mr. Rush grew up in Cypress and graduated from California State University, Long Beach, where he studied with the late Dr. Michael Carney in percussion and with John Prince in jazz.   He received his Bachelor’s degree in Music Education.  When he came to Los Al in 2002, he headed the marching band, Jazz II, color guard, concert bands, string orchestra, and drum line programs. Since then, each of the groups has achieved 
April 17, 2015

STEM vs. STEAM

Science, technology, engineering and mathematics are the center of attention in most US public schools today. The focus on STEM fields was initiated to increase global competitiveness and the project does have its merits. However, it has left the arts languishing far off in the periphery. This is quite unfortunate, as art education is known to improve academic performance.

Pages