Buckeye Elementary School District Superintendent Kristi Sandvik Receives 10th Annual VH1 Save the Music Foundation Award for Distinguished Support of Music

     Award Presented During AASA’s 150th Anniversary Celebration at its National Conference on Education

(San Diego, CA) February 25, 2015 – Kristi Sandvik, superintendent of the Buckeye Elementary School District in Buckeye, Ariz., has been named the recipient of the 10th annual Administrator Award for Distinguished Support of Music Education. Sandvik was chosen for her deep commitment to providing Buckeye students with music education as part of the core curriculum.

The award is sponsored by the VH1 Save The Music Foundation and will be presented at the National Conference on Education in San Diego, Calif., hosted by AASA, The School Superintendents Association, where the organization is celebrating its 150th anniversary. The award is presented each year at AASA’s national conference to one superintendent or school CEO who has exhibited outstanding commitment to restoring music education in his or her school district.

Past recipients include: Reginald Mayo, retired superintendent of New Haven (Conn.) Public Schools; Rita Bishop, superintendent of Roanoke City (Va.) Public Schools; Kathy L. Kelly, superintendent of the Columbia Heights (Minn.) Public Schools; Duncan N. P. "Pat" Pritchett Jr., past superintendent of the Indianapolis (Ind.) Public Schools; John Lange, past superintendent of Adams County (Colo.) School District 14; Carol Johnson, past superintendent of the Memphis City (Tenn.) Schools and current superintendent of the Boston (Mass.) Public Schools; Richard Kaplan, superintendent of New Brunswick (N.J.) Public Schools; Eugene White, superintendent of the Indianapolis (Ind.) Public Schools and James A. Williams, superintendent of the Buffalo (N.Y.) Public Schools.

“Dr. Sandvik’s work in the Buckeye Elementary School District has been a shining example of what public school music programs should strive for,” said Paul Cothran, vice president & executive director of the VH1 Save The Music Foundation. “Through our partnership with her and the Buckeye Elementary School District, all six schools have restored their instrumental music programs. Since 2011, the VH1 Save The Music Foundation has donated $180,000 worth of new musical instruments to the Buckeye Elementary School District. We are thrilled to recognize Dr. Sandvik for her unparalleled support from the top. Her commitment ensured equitable access to music and the arts for all students district-wide.”

“I am grateful and appreciative that VH1 Save The Music Foundation is bestowing this national honor upon me and humbly accept it on behalf of the entire Buckeye Community,” said Sandvik. “We could not support the arts without the backing of our governing board and administration. Our administrators deserve special recognition for the time, effort and energy they put into ensuring that the arts are embedded in our curriculum. These magical moments provide students a creative venue for their innovative expression, motivation and differentiated learning. My sincere thanks to VH1 Save The Music for this honor and their generous contributions to Buckeye Elementary School District students. This passionate advocacy for our children brings honor and distinction to our teaching profession.”

In 2011, the VH1 Save The Music Foundation began a partnership with the Buckeye Elementary School District in Buckeye, Ariz. Each year, a firm commitment was made from Sandvik to budget for and hire certified music teachers. With the commitment from her and the district, along with generous matching fund support from the A. Wallace Denny Fund of the Arizona Community Foundation, the VH1 Save The Music Foundation provided grants of new musical instruments to each eligible school. Granting was completed in 2014 with two final grantee schools, Sundance Elementary School and Buckeye Elementary School. With six grants in place in Buckeye, every student now has equity in access to music education.

Jacky Alling, chief philanthropic services officer of the Arizona Community Foundation said, “A. Wallace Denny established this fund so that children in the West Valley could have access to a quality music education. He would be so pleased with this partnership where his legacy funds have helped to provide instruments for several whole schools. Our congratulations Dr. Sandvik for her award and VH1 Save The Music for making this partnership happen.”

About VH1 Save The Music Foundation

The VH1 Save The Music Foundation is committed to ensuring that music instruction is a core component to a complete education. Since 1997, we have partnered with more than 1900 public schools in 231 school districts to give children the tools and confidence to excel in academics and in life. #PassTheNote and get involved at vh1savethemusic.org , join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @vh1savethemusic.

About AASA

AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org


VH1 Save The Music Foundation
Trell Thomas
VH1 Save The Music Foundation
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New York, NY 10036 
Office (212) 846-4919

AASA, The School Superintendents Association
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