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Rainbow District School Board launches Joan Mantle Music Trust

Rainbow District School Board today launched the Joan Mantle Music Trust as Councillor Doug Craig, on behalf of Mayor John Rodriguez, declared November 24th to 30th Music Appreciation Week in the City of Greater Sudbury.

 Joan Mantle, founding music teacher at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School, welcomed the opportunity to direct the Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School Senior Jazz Band. The band will perform at the school’s Swing Soirée on Saturday, November 29th.

Rainbow District School Board today launched the Joan Mantle Music Trust as Greater Sudbury Mayor John Rodriguez declared November 24th to 30th Music Appreciation Week in the City of Greater Sudbury.

The week will culminate with Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School’s Swing Soirée Dinner and Dance on Saturday, November 29th. This year’s event will celebrate long-time educator Joan Mantle with the inauguration of the trust being named in her honour. Citizens are invited to donate to the trust in the form of bequests, cash and/or cheques or new musical instruments. Rainbow District School Board will issue receipts for income tax purposes.

“The Joan Mantle Music Trust has been established to help refresh, modernize and revitalize music programs in the Rainbow District School Board,” said Chair Judy Hunda.  “The trust will enable us to replace, where necessary, musical instruments that have given such great pleasure beyond their serviceable life. In order to go beyond the current level of excellence, supplemental funding is essential to support and expand the inventory of instruments.”

Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School, which has spearheaded the creation of the Joan Mantle Music Trust, will be the first to benefit. Joan Mantle was the founding music teacher at the school some 40 years ago. As the trust grows, other Rainbow secondary schools will reap the rewards of Sudbury’s generosity. The Joan Mantle Music Trust will allocate funds to secondary school music programs in Rainbow District School Board, one school at a time.  This will ensure that there is a tangible improvement in the condition of equipment in an entire department, allowing for students to achieve more in their musical studies together. 

In proclaiming November 24th to 30th as Music Appreciation Week, Greater Sudbury Mayor John Rodriguez invited all citizens in the City of Greater Sudbury to celebrate the contributions of dedicated music educators and musicians. “The City of Greater Sudbury recognizes the richness that music brings to our community,” said Mayor Rodriguez. “Through our various school and community programs, our youth are able to learn and appreciate music.” He added: “New musical instruments and equipment are required in all schools. The Joan Mantle Music Trust will give members of the community an opportunity to contribute to music education for years to come.”

For her part, Joan Mantle is delighted to be the patron of a trust dedicated to music education. “Music education benefits students in many ways,” she said. “Music is a universal language that enriches the mind and nourishes the spirit. When students gain an appreciation of music and learn practical skills, they discover a source of enjoyment and personal satisfaction that will last a lifetime.”

About Joan Mantle, patron of the Joan Mantle Music Trust

Joan Mantle has dedicated many years to music education in Rainbow Schools. 

When she joined the Sudbury Board of Education in 1964 to teach math and science at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School, Principal Bruce Elliot, who was aware of her extensive background in music, invited her to establish a music program at the school. She gladly accepted and planted the seeds for what continues to be a hallmark of education at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School.

Two years later, Lasalle Secondary School came calling and recruited Joan to head the Music Department. She taught music at Lasalle Secondary School for 15 successful years. The bands under her stewardship garnered numerous awards.

In 1981, Joan was named Vice-Principal of Lasalle Secondary School, where music continued to flourish. She returned to Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School as Principal in 1985, where she remained for seven years.  Joan then became Principal of Sudbury Secondary School where she was an ambassador par excellence for the Performing Arts Program.
During much of this time, Joan was the Director of the Ontario Music Leadership Program held annually at Lake Couchiching. She also served as Director and Chair of the Ontario Secondary School Principals’ Association and played a key role in the formation of the Ontario Principals’ Council.  Joan spent the last six years of her career as Superintendent of Education for the Rainbow District School Board.

Since retiring in 2003, Joan has continued to serve our community on many boards. In 2007, she was Chair of the Board of Governors at Cambrian College.

For her contribution to music and the arts over a long and successful career in education, it is certainly fitting that Joan Mantle be named patron of a trust in support of music education throughout the Rainbow District School Board’s secondary schools.

About the Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School Swing Soirée

Established in 1989, the Swing Soirée has become an annual tradition at Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School. Organized by students from Lo-Ellen Park’s music department, this event raises funds for students to participate in the yearly band trip. The school gym is turned into a Christmas wonderland and the dance features the festive sounds of the Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School Senior Jazz Band.

Tickets to the Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School Swing Soirée Dinner and Dance are $35 single, $60 a couple, $240 for a table of eight, and $300 for a table of 10. Tickets are available from the Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School Office on Loach’s Road and the Sudbury Theatre Centre Box Office on Shaughnessy Street.

Those who attend the Swing Soirée will have an opportunity to be among the first to make a contribution to the Joan Mantle Music Trust.

About the importance of music education

The Rainbow District School Board provides students with opportunities to increase their musical literacy and develop their creative and critical thinking skills by engaging them in activities that lead them to learn in, about and through music. Musical literacy is the ability to read, write, create and perform music, as well as analyze, interpret and appreciate music from a variety of cultures and historical periods.

Learning in, about and through music is part of a well-rounded education that reinforces academic skills and nurtures life skills. Learning songs and rhythms develops literacy skills. Connecting songs, language and movement increases thinking. Music improves self-esteem and confidence and promotes teamwork and an overall appreciation of the arts.


Media Contact:

Nicole Charette, Senior Advisor,
Corporate Communications and Strategic Planning,
Rainbow District School Board, 705.674.3171, ext. 7217.