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December, 21, 2022
12:15 PM - 01:15 PM




Don Stinson

Don Stinson

Poverty, Barriers, Music & Success: Understanding and Helping Low-Income Music Students Succeed

Clinic Synopsis:

Music is expensive. For some families, financial barriers, resources and time constraints are limiting factors in students' participation in school music. This session will help teachers understand low-income situations and present strategies and ideas to help with teaching, supporting, and advocating for students from high need situations. Conversations on common teaching scenarios and locating and asking for resources will take place during this session.

Don Stinson - Biographical Information

Don Stinson is the author of High Needs, Monumental Successes: Understanding: Teaching Music to Low-Income and Underserved Students, available from GIA Publications. As a former low-income student teaching at his alma mater, Don strives to advocate for students from all socio-economic backgrounds.  Don is the director of bands at Joliet Central High School in Joliet, IL, only the fifth director in the band’s 111-year history. He has the distinct pleasure of leading a program that serves a diverse population in socioeconomic status and cultural backgrounds. The band has appeared several times at prestigious state and national festivals. In 2021, the Midwest Clinic invited the band for a special 75th anniversary performance.  Don has received several recognitions, including the Yale University Educator Award, citations of excellence from the National Band Association, and the Chicagoland Outstanding Music Educator Award. He is a 2021 Yamaha’s 40 Under 40 Music Educator and a recipient of the Dr. William P. Foster Project Community Development Award. He is a member of the Phi Beta Mu International Bandmaster’s Fraternity, the National Band Association, the American School Band Directors Association, and the Illinois Music Educators Association. He is a National Board Certified Teacher. Don hosts the music education podcast The Bandmasters Podcast. Don is the president of Legacy Fine Arts Inc. NFP, a non-profit that provides music mentoring and programs for underserved youth. You can find Don's writings and recordings on the Yamaha Education Suite or at