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Roberson Music Education: Leaders in North Carolina
Roberson Fine Arts: Leaders in North Carolina
Posted on 11/19/2020
Two veteran Roberson music educators accept top offices with the NC Music Educators Association.Featured Photo: 1. (Above) T.C. Roberson High School Director of Bands Jim Kirkpatrick (Left) teaches in his classroom on Oct. 19, 2018, and Choral Director Aleisa Baker (Right) conducts at the Biltmore Estate Christmas Tree Raising on Nov. 1, 2019. 2. (Below) Jim Kirkpatrick leads an outdoor marching band rehearsal on Oct. 20, 2020 in preparation for the Together As One virtual performance.

By: Benjamin Rickert
BCS Communications Dept.

Buncombe County Schools proudly offer a world-class fine arts education to every student and set an example for schools across the state.

This month, the thriving arts programs at T.C. Roberson High School expanded their influence as two veteran teachers accepted high offices within the North Carolina Music Educators Association (NCMEA). On Nov. 9, Director of Bands Jim Kirkpatrick was selected to be the President-Elect of the North Carolina Bandmasters Association (NCBA), the official band section of the NCMEA and an umbrella organization for bands across the state. Choral Director Aleisa Baker was chosen as the Chair-Elect for the NCMEA High School Choral Section.

“It is a tremendous honor and humbling experience to have been selected by my peers to serve North Carolina bands as President of NCBA,” said Kirkpatrick. “[NCBA] has a rich history of providing many of the most important performance opportunities for band students throughout the school year.”

Jim Kirkpatrick leads an outdoor marching band rehearsal on October 20, 2020.Kirkpatrick and Baker will serve in parallel for six years. Kirkpatrick’s offices will include two-year terms as President-Elect, President, and Past-President of the NCBA, and Baker will serve two-year terms as Chair-Elect, Chair, and Past-Chair.

Baker credits her success, in part, to the strong state-level arts education leaders that influenced her over the past 25 years.

“I am excited to represent Western North Carolina in this leadership role,” she said, “and hope to represent my colleagues, both locally and across the state, in a positive and encouraging manner that keeps music alive in the heart of every choral student in North Carolina.”

Kirkpatrick’s desire to see his students and co-leaders achieve their best drives him to adopt a servant-leader perspective.

“Our band leadership team is trained to seek ways to enable their peers to reach their fullest potential. My hope is that Roberson band students will be motivated by seeing their Director aiming to serve in the same manner for his own professional community,” he said.

BCS is proud that several of our arts educators serve schools across the state! For example, Mr. Robert Waller of Valley Springs Middle School currently serves as the NCMEA Honors Chorus Chair, and Ms. Cheryl Lewis of Fairview Elementary represents Western North Carolina on the NCMEA Elementary Section Board. Special thanks to T.C. Roberson High for keeping the BCS Communications Dept. informed of their recent successes.

Learn more about Jim Kirkpatrick and Aleisa Baker on their program websites.

Buncombe County Schools is in the process of reviewing its website to ensure compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Buncombe County Schools does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its education programs or activities and is required by Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 and federal regulations to not discriminate in such a manner. This requirement extends to admission and employment. Inquiries about the application of Title IX and its implementing federal regulations may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator and/or the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education. The Title IX Coordinator's contact information is: Shanon Martin,, 828-255-5918, 175 Bingham Road, Asheville, NC 28806.

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