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Music Teacher Harrawood Wins NC Symphony Award

For 34 years, Ann Harrawood has taught music in CHCCS elementary schools, and she impacted thousands of young children as they formed their first perspectives, skills and pleasures in music. Some of those students have gone on to very successful careers as performers and educators themselves.

Harrawood was teaching at Frank Porter Graham Elementary School when Principal Emily Bivins saw her name on the list of teachers who requested a position in the new dual-language school there. Bivins had already known Harrawood for years, and she was thrilled to learn the veteran music teacher wanted to help open the new Bilingue school.

On Thursday, June 13, one of Harrawood’s former students, Jason Spencer, honored his teacher with the North Carolina Symphony’s Outstanding Music Educator Award for 2019. Spencer is the current Director of Education with the symphony, so it was fitting and powerful to see the student celebrate his first music teacher, in the cafeteria of FPGB.

The press summary about the award detailed the factors in selecting recipients of the life-time achievement award, but as Spencer spoke to FPGB staff and friends about his deep admiration and affection for Harrawood, the quality of making “a lasting difference in the lives of students of all abilities and backgrounds” was especially poignant.

“In recognition for her decades of service to the students of Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, the North Carolina Symphony honors Ann Harrawood as Outstanding Music Educator. The award serves to recognize teachers who make a lasting difference in the lives of students of all abilities and backgrounds; serve the community in an exemplary manner as a role model in music education; inspire students to reach high musical standards; and instill a love for music in children. The North Carolina Symphony celebrates Ann’s commitment to CHCCS and the lasting impact she has had on students of all backgrounds.”

Brenda Whiteman, CHCCS Arts Education Coordinator, said, "Ms. Harrawood is well-deserving of the NC Symphony Outstanding Educator Award.  She has been a music educator for over three decades, and has touched the lives of thousands of children."

Harrawood retired from teaching this month. Congratulations and best of luck, Ms. Harrawood!