Writing Torch semester in review

My favorite story I wrote this semester was definitely the story about Sparky, the first service dog at Kennedy. iT WAS A STORY THAT REALLY INTERESTED ME AND SO i WAS PASSIONATE IN WRITING IT.

Service Dog Makes Things Easier for Sophomore

Picture from my story about the first service dog at Kennedy, Sparky.


Kennedy High School band director, Lesley Fleer has been one of the school's band directors for a whopping 17 years and loves working with the students at Kennedy.

“The thing I like most is the kids, absolutely the kids and coming in a close second is the staff, I mean the staff is great,” Fleer said. “The kids really, really work hard and really push themselves. It's fun to watch them grow, so I really enjoy working with the kids here.”

Fleer hasn't always been a band director. She is from Indiana originally and taught there for a while. Then she took some time off, headed up to Minnesota, went to a school by the Twin Cities and learned how to fix band instruments. After that Fleer worked in some music stores, owned her own business for a while, then ended up at Kennedy.

On the week of Nov. 14, Fleer received an email from Mark Philgreen, the President of the Northeast Iowa Bandmasters Association, stating that she was nominated for the Philip Sehmann Excellence in Teaching Award for High School Instrumental Music by other band teachers in the area and won the nomination.

"It's nice to know that not only are the kids benefiting but colleagues in the area understand as well and it's nice to get a little nod," Fleer said.

On Dec. 3, Fleer was awarded the Philip Sehmann Excellence in Teaching Award for High School Instrumental Music for her active career in the field (high school band director,) as well as her involvement with Kennedy's band program.

The Philip Sehmann Award is given in memory of Mr. Sehmann who had a highly distinguished career as Director of Bands at Crestwood Community Schools. The award is presented to those individuals who meet the criteria of excellence, dedication and commitment to the value of instrumental music education in schools.

"It's nice to be recognized for the work, you know sometimes we get so involved in the work we do and working with the kids and stacks of paperwork, etc. and so on that sometimes we just kinda forget to look up," Fleer said.

Photo from Lesley Fleer story

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