Yesterday the Bakersfield City School District (BCSD) announced that the dates of both the 15th annual Junior High/Middle School Band and Orchestra Standards Festival and the 5th annual Junior High/Middle School Choir Standards Festival.
The Band and Orchestra Standards Festival will be held Tuesday, March 8, 2022, at Bakersfield College’s Simonsen Indoor Theater. The Choir Standards Festival will be held at the same location on Thursday, March 10, 2022. The festivals won’t be open to the public, but local media is encouraged to attend.
“The festival is a chance to get Bakersfield City School District music students onto a college campus so that they can see future educational opportunities,” said BCSD Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator Michael Stone.
Although BCSD continued their musical education through the COVID-19 pandemic, these festivals will be the first big events since 2020. This year, the District’s elementary instrumental music program is the largest on record since records were kept in 2003— with 3,359 students participating.
“Both festivals were created to benchmark student progress in meeting District standards for performance in band and orchestra classes,” BCSD stated in a press release. “The festivals are an opportunity for the District’s music faculty to focus instruction with the goal of improving student achievement at the junior high/middle school level.”
BCSD’s Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) Department recently earned a 2022 National School Boards Association Silver Magna Award, recognizing work to provide equitable access to music and arts education throughout the district. The District is also a multi-year award winner as a nationally-recognized Best Communities for Music Education district, as recognized by the National Association for Music Merchants (NAMM).