MusiCounts, the music education charity associated with The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) and the Canadian Country Music Association (CCMA), honours a music teacher who goes above and beyond with his students. This year, Steve Sainas of Terry Fox Secondary School in Port Coquitlam, BC, is the winner. I quote from the press release:
“With 2015 marking the 10th anniversary of this award, Steve Sainas represents all of the qualities of a music teacher that led to its creation a decade ago,” said Allan Reid, President & CEO, CARAS/The JUNO Awards & MusiCounts. “He has created a program that uses a forward-thinking approach to music education that engages students on a very deep level. Bestowing this honour to Steve would not be possible if it wasn’t for MAGIC!’s generosity. If it wasn’t for the music teachers in their own lives who provided them with formative experiences in music, they may not have followed the path that has led them to choose music as their career.”
So what’s this program?
In 2000, he developed a largely self-funded project, the Rock School and Recording Arts Program, which encourages participation at all levels, including career path preparation. The classes welcome at-risk youth, the severely learning disabled, the physically disabled and the gifted. Every student in the program is provided with professional musical instruments and recording equipment. Outside of the classroom, Sainas is an accomplished musician, having performed and recorded in a wide variety of genres, and for the past fifteen years he has led an award-winning blues act, Mud Dog.
Nice. Steve will be honoured during the Juno celebrations in Hamilton next week.