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Hampton City Schools and The Virginia Symphony Orchestra Collaborate through Virtual Music Education

This school year has presented many challenges for music educators throughout the Commonwealth. A teacher’s ability to bring students together to collaborate and perform has been limited. However, through a collaborative partnership with Hampton City Schools music educators and the professional musicians of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra (VSO), our students have been provided music enrichment and music-making opportunities. Now, more than ever, our students need to engage in a well-rounded education.

Middle and high school students and teachers in Hampton participated in virtual music masterclasses with Virginia Symphony Orchestra Musicians. “I am truly grateful that my students were given the opportunity to work with Virginia Symphony Orchestra musicians. Professional musicians from the symphony held multiple Zoom sessions for beginning and advanced players. They covered technical aspects of playing and working through music to address details that are specialized for those instruments. Students were excited to hear professionals of their own section and were smiling and volunteering to share,” shared Lisa Farrell, Eaton Middle School band director.

Students in elementary and secondary schools participated in the Virginia Symphony Orchestra’s virtual celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s, life and legacy entitled “Songs of a Dreamer.” The powerful presentation was pre-recorded and made available at large via the Virginia Symphony Orchestra’s YouTube Channel. The presentation served as an example of how the power of music can bring all people together.

All of Hampton schools had students who participated in the orchestra’s virtual performance of “The Orchestra Swings.” While this is usually a field trip for specific grade levels, this year the VSO provided the opportunity to all students, families, and schools. Teachers used the virtual concert to foster a formal concert experience and the opportunity to teach students that jazz has a distinctive rhythmic feel. It is from a musical era dominated by big band jazz, which is a style of dance that grew alongside the music. Students also learned about the elusive, but unmistakable, feeling that results when musicians are deeply tuned into each other and are playing in sync or “in the pocket.” Though swing is a characteristic of jazz, an orchestra can also swing. 

“We were so glad to be able to continue our partnership with Hampton City Schools teachers and students this year given all of the challenges presented by the pandemic. The VSO remained adaptable, and our musicians were flexible to ensure we could still effectively deliver our programs virtually. The teachers in Hampton have been incredibly innovative, and I look forward to incorporating the lessons learned and methods developed during this time to our future work together so that we can continue to provide valuable programs for students,” shared Rebekah Geiselman, Virginia Symphony Orchestra education and community engagement manager.

“The Virginia Symphony Orchestra has shined brightly as a valued community partner, helping our music educators to overcome some of the challenges they faced during this pandemic school year. Our shared educational mission and work have provided many enriching opportunities that our students would not have experienced without their unwavering dedication to Hampton City Schools,” shared Kelly Dee, Hampton City Schools fine arts teacher specialist for music education.

©2020 HAMPTON CITY SCHOOLS All rights reserved - One Franklin Street, Hampton Virginia 23669 - 757-727-2000


As stated in School Board Policy AC and GBA, Hampton City Schools (“HCS”) does not discriminate with regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, disability, ancestry, marital status, pregnancy, child birth or related medical conditions, status as a veteran, genetic information, or other characteristic protected by law in its programs, activities and employment practices and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups.  

HCS also prohibits retaliation under School Board Policy GBAB for the purpose of interfering with a person’s rights and/or privileges under federal civil rights laws, which can include: (i) raising concerns with Division personnel about a civil rights violation; (ii) asserting a right or advocating for the rights of a student or employee under federal civil rights laws; or (iii) participating in a complaint investigation or related proceedings. 

All individuals are encouraged to promptly report any incident they believe to be discrimination, harassment or retaliation in violation of HCS School Board Policy.  All reports should be made to the HCS Compliance Officer, who also serves as the HCS Executive Director of Human Resources and Title IX/ADA Coordinator.  Upon receiving a report of alleged discrimination, harassment or retaliation, the Compliance Officer shall promptly authorize an investigation into the complaint, determine whether the alleged act occurred, and determine whether any action must be taken to end or prevent further harassment, discrimination, or retaliation.  For more information about this process, please review the Formal Resolution Process and/or Informal Resolution Process.    

Should you have any questions about these procedures or the contents of this notice, please contact:

Executive Director of Human Resources
Title IX and ADA Coordinator
Department of Human Resources
One Franklin Street
Hampton, VA 23669
(757) 727-2300



Hampton City Schools (HCS) is committed to making its website accessible for all, including individuals with disabilities, and strives to ensure accessibility currently and as new technologies emerge.  The division welcomes questions and feedback on the site’s accessibility at each development phase.  By clicking on “Contact” at the upper right of the main webpage, all users are able to “Help Resolve a Concern,” “Share a Story,” “Provide Feedback,” and “Ask a Question.”  Additionally, the Contact Us page provides direct email access to HCS Webmaster Vickie Carper,


HCS’s computer systems and networks include all of the computer hardware, operating system software, application software, stored text, data files, electronic mail (email), local databases, externally accessed databases, CD-ROM, optical media, clip art, digital images, digitized information, communications technologies, and new available technologies.

Please note that some pages on the HCS website contain links to third-party sites.  HCS is not responsible for the content, facts, opinions or accessibility of third-party sites.


The majority of pages in our site are available in HTML format that can be deciphered by screen readers. Some documents are in Portable Document Format (PDF), which require Adobe Acrobat Reader to view.

  • To download this free program, visit the Adobe website.
  • To read PDF documents with a screen reader, please link to the Access Adobe website, which provides useful tools and resources.

Also, many popular browsers contain built-in accessibility tools, and there are other plug-ins that make websites more accessible.

The HCS website is designed and monitored by HCS Webmaster Vickie Carper, who serves as the gatekeeper for website content and accessibility.   The Webmaster is under the direction of the Executive Director of Public Relations and Marketing, supervised by the Director of Graphics.
Web visitors using assistive technology who may have trouble accessing information on the website may contact the HCS Webmaster,, the Executive Director of Public Relations and Marketing, and/or the Director of Graphics,

When submitting a question or concern via email, “accessibility” should be included in the subject line.  Every reasonable attempt will be made to address the user’s concern within twenty-four hours.  To assist HCS in responding appropriately, all inquiries should include the following information:

  • A description of the accessibility concern or question;
  • The webpage address of the requested material;
  • The format in which the user prefers to receive the material;
  • The user’s contact information, including preferred method of contact.


HCS monitors all technology resource activity and requires all employees, students and individuals with access to HCS computer systems and networks to annually read and sign an Acceptable Use Policy.  See School Board Policy IIBEA for Students; School Board Policy GBBB for Employees.

Our continuing goal is for the HCS website to be accessible to individuals with disabilities in compliance with the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and that statute's implementing regulations at 34 C.F.R. Part 104, and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and that statute's implementing regulations at 28 C.F.R. Part 35.

Good faith efforts are being made to ensure that our website complies with web accessibility standards. In addition to the federal regulations above, we are actively working to conform to level AA of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.
Prior to posting new website content, the HCS Webmaster determines if the proposed content meets the criteria of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).  Periodically the HCS Webmaster checks the website with a recognized website checker such as 508 Checker and WAVE.  If the audit identifies issues of concern or content errors that impede accessibility to any user, the concerns/errors are evaluated and remedied within a six-week period.


HCS’s website and computer systems and networks are provided on an “as available” basis.  HCS makes no warranties, expressed or implied, without limitation, regarding the fitness for a particular purpose regarding any service provided by the system and any information contained or software used therein.  The division uses hardware and software provided by third-party technology vendors.  Therefore, the division does not warrant that the functions or services performed by, or that the information or software on the system, will meet the user’s requirements.