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Year: 2000 – Province: Ontario
Certificate of Achievement Recipients
School: Athens District High School
Athens, Ontario K0E 1B0
Principal: Michael O'Donnell
School Telephone: 613-924-2618
School Fax: 613-924-1525
School Website: www.ucdsb.on.ca/athens
Grades/Subjects Taught: English, music, history, special education
- Seek ways for students to expand their knowledge, develop their skills in practical situations and publish their work.
- Use technology in the classroom to help disabled students with difficult tasks, expand the resources of the school, and allow greater creative scope in music.
Sees abilities where others see disabilities:
- piloted integration of challenged students into classrooms in school district
- organized exchange between learning disabled students from Athens District High School and intellectually handicapped students from Halifax
- lobbied for and then implemented the integration of a severely handicapped student into the school and band.
Integrates computer technology into music curriculum:
- developed a music technology lab to complement instrumental music programs
- students participate in the Music Cyberfest (an online music festival Mr. Palmer helped create) and the Online MIDI Jam
- students consult online with the Queen's University School of Music and the Canadian Music Centre, and compose music to enhance projects for other school courses, such as award-winning websites.
Rejuvenated and leads school band program comprising 10 to 40 per cent of student population at small school. This excellent participation is despite the fact that many students take the bus to school, that feeder schools havevirtually no music programs, and that Mr. Palmer has a meagre budget for equipment and other expenses. The school regularly wins awards at band festivals.
"He teaches the heart of a curriculum, rather than the hollow shell offered in many classrooms." Former student
"Jim is a students' teacher. He challenges them and brings out the best in them no matter what the activity or the level of the student." Fellow teacher, past recipient of a Prime Minister's Award for Teaching Excellence