Today, the GRAMMY Museum announced 11th grade history teacher Heather Moore as the 2019 Jane Ortner Education Award recipient. "The award honors K-12 academic teachers who use music in the classroom as a powerful educational tool," the museum explains. They have also opened applications for the 2020 edition of the award.
The Arcadia High School (located in Arcadia, Calif.) teacher will receive a monetary honorarium—the second year this has been offered to the awardee—along with a grant for the Los Angeles County public school.
Moore will be celebrated later this year at a special GRAMMY Museum event in L.A., and has been invited to attend the 62nd GRAMMY Awards on Jan. 26, 2020.
"We look forward to honoring Heather Moore for her dedication to executing cutting-edge lesson plans and devotion to creating a positive influence on her students through the power of music," Michael Sticka, President of the GRAMMY Museum, said.
The award celebrates educators who integrate music into the classroom experience, who is selected based on the lesson plans they submit. The museum reviews the lessons via a panel of teachers and education administrators who evaluate for "creativity, teachability, transferability and level of student engagement."
Moore's lesson plan, along with other music-centered education tools from the Museum and past award recipients' lessons, can be downloaded for free and implemented by other teachers. Her plan focuses on examining the impact of the Great Depression on the American public through the lens of music at the time, highlighting artists like Louis Armstrong, Woody Guthrie and others.
"I am honored to receive the Jane Ortner Education Award," Moore stated. "I have always believed that music is a beautiful and important way to connect students with the people and stories of the past. The Jane Ortner Award is a wonderful acknowledgement and celebration of music's centrality to education and our human story."
"Arcadia High was recently distinguished as being in the top 1% for having the best public high school teachers in America, and Heather Moore exemplifies why we received this recognition," Angie Dillman, Arcadia High School Principal, added. "Heather goes above and beyond in her institution practices to challenge and inspire our students to have a positive and profound impact on their world. We are so grateful for all she brings to our students and our team."
As part of the Museum's deeply impactful music education programs and initiatives, the Jane Ortner Education Award for teachers and the Jane Ortner Artist Award were established by the Museum in partnership with entertainment attorney and Museum Board member Chuck Ortner. His late wife Jane Ortner was a devoted and beloved public school teacher who valued music as a tool for teaching academic subjects and building confidence and community. Previous recipients of the Jane Ortner Artist Award include Lady Gaga, Jackson Browne, Janelle Monáe and John Legend.
Applications for the 2020 Jane Ortner Education Award are currently open for K-12 English, social studies, math, science, and foreign language teachers and will be accepted through Dec. 4, 2019. Music teachers may apply (and be nominated) for the Music Educator Award, which is currently open for the 2021 award.