The Marching Arts as Part of a School’s Athletic Department
Several years ago, all of the marching arts programs at Miamisburg High School, such as the marching band, winter guard, and indoor winds ensemble, were placed under the umbrella of the athletic department. This means that the school’s athletic directors, Jason Osborne and Jason Shade, directly oversee the school’s extracurricular marching arts offerings.
Since this began, the ensembles have flourished as the students are treated as equals to all other interscholastic sports. Band athletes receive access to the medical staff, equal opportunity when it comes to scheduling facilities, both outdoor and indoor, and even recognition as “Athlete of the Month” on Miamisburg Athletic social media sites.
The staff has benefited because there is now a clear chain of command to follow. The directors of the ensembles directly report to the athletic directors. This has streamlined things like director evaluations, paperwork such as medical forms and physicals, as well as bus and facility scheduling.
In addition, the arts programs have benefited financially from this arrangement. Both the band and winter guard boosters have had the opportunity to operate concession stands at events. The band boosters run the visiting athletic concession stand at all football games, and both organizations profit from concession at local MSBA, MEPA, and WGI events. Both of the athletic directors are also incredibly visible and involved at all pageantry events held on school grounds.
Finally, the marching arts being treated as a sport has helped the students at Miamisburg as students are able to receive physical education credit for participating, the same way that athletes are. This has allowed many hardworking students the opportunity to take other classes that they may be more interested in as opposed to having to take PE while participating in marching band.
Overview of planning and execution process for this project
Jason Shade, who was already serving in the position, transitioned to a full-time administrator position and immediately began overseeing marching band, color guard, and winds. All pageantry arts students were then expected to sign the same athletic code of conduct as all other student athletes, and those ensembles officially started as members of the athletic department during the 2015-2016 school year.
There is not a single part of our program, school, district, or community that has not been improved by this change.
Specific Budget Breakdown
New or recurring project?Recurring
How did you update/change this project from its previous occurrence?
Challenges/obstacles that were encountered
The transition did not take long, however, and within a few months, everything was running smoothly.
Measurement of the success/effectiveness of this project?
Our band and guard program has flourished since this change took place. We have continued to experience unprecedented growth while also achieving quality results, both in the quality of importance, and in competitive results.
We continue to streamline and improve the process and our athletic directors remain very involved and our programs continue to improve.
Advice for someone looking to replicate this project in their own community?