To whom it may concern:

I am an AHES alumni and currently a senior at Henry Hudson Regional School.   Though much has changed since I left AHES (new faculty, the addition, etc.) I am still aware of most of the major happenings at the school, I have a brother in Ms. Voorhees’ fifth grade class and a very talkative little cousin in Ms. Meyer’s first grade class.  Since I have left the school I have been excited to hear about the new addition, and the ‘green’ projects that are being implemented and such; however, the most recent news that has reached me has left me very disappointed.

As I write, I hold the letter that my brother brought home today, March 31, 2010.  Though, as stated in the letter, ‘there is no good news,’ there is one piece of bad news that particularly upsets me.  This is the elimination of instrumental band.  I first began playing the trumpet in fifth grade with Mrs. Talmage.  I was so excited to learn the notes and scales and valvings of the trumpet, and I thought it was the coolest thing to be able to make music.  For christmas that year I asked for and got a trumpet, and practiced in the back yard.  I am currently first chair in Mr. Elliott’s high school symphonic band.  My brother started the alto saxophone this year, and I was just as excited for him, as I was when I first started band class.  He enjoys practicing around the house (music has grown to be a large part of our house since I began the trumpet… he is allowed to practice inside) and I enjoy listening to him.  I don’t blame him for being brought to tears over the decision regarding funding.

I’m not writing to attack the statements that have been made in the letter, or to tell you how to do your job.  I’m only writing to express my great disappointment in the decisions that have been made regarding the music program.  I am disappointed that my little brother will be without a saxophone lesson or a school concert  for me to attend next year.  I am disappointed that my little cousin will not even have the option of joining a school band until the seventh grade.  I am disappointed for all the other students that will be denied the great opportunity to be exposed to and educated in music from a young age.  It would be a shame for AHES to lose a program that has made it so unique for so many years.

Thank you for your time and consideration.


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Derek Springsteen
Atlantic Highlands, NJ

A concerned brother/cousin/musician

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...