Unlocking Passion & Harmony in the Classroom

Unlocking Passion & Harmony in the Classroom

KSA Band Director Anthony Harvey

How KIPP Scholar Academy’s band director creates an inclusive space for all students to flourish in music

KIPP Scholar Academy (KSA) has grown a strong reputation for shaping young minds through the transformative power of music. 

Every student, regardless of their prior musical experience, learns the basics of piano, discovers their voice, and joins either the KSA band or choir.

KSA’s performing arts focus drew Anthony Harvey, our inspiring KSA band director, to move from Kansas City to join the KSA team and share his passion for music with students with similar backgrounds and circumstances as he did growing up. 

“Music has such an emotional connection for me. That's just my getaway from the realities of life or stressors I may have. Sometimes I just play music, and it's kind of healing to my soul,” said Anthony. 

As an educator, Anthony always seeks ways to create a learning environment where all students feel comfortable and encouraged to participate regardless of their background or prior musical experience. Because of scheduling constraints, KSA cannot offer separate beginner, intermediate, or advanced band classes, so he often has classes with students at varying proficiency levels. 

“Just like we have different learners when it comes to reading and math, it's the same way with music; people learn it differently. You have to differentiate the way you show them how to play the instruments or read the music,” he said. 

KSA recently opened a beautiful new campus, which includes a dedicated music classroom for the KSA band. At the previous location, KSA was located on two campuses across the street from one another, which meant Anthony would have to move instruments from one building to another. Now everyone, including the instruments, gets to be under one roof. 

“It's been a joy to see how happy they are that we have the new building. This new campus just gives the students a better sense of school pride,” he said. 

In this new home, Anthony hopes to continue creating joyful core memories for students, similar to the memories he still vividly remembers of playing concerts with his school bands. He is proud to work at a school that values music education and the positive impact it can have on the growth and development of our KIPPsters. 

“I think it's so important because students need to be experiencing the arts. Some of the students who have behavior issues or academic challenges are some of the students who flourish in music. Those are the ones that, if I give them a sheet of music or show them the parts, they usually pick it right up. Those are the ones that have that creative mind that fits right into music,” he said. 

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