Cielo Vista Charter School will receive a Yamaha keyboard teaching system Wednesday, January 16. The school was selected from hundreds of possible winners in a regional contest based on a “compelling” request and votes from supporters. Cielo Vista Charter was one of three schools chosen (the only one in the Coachella Valley) to receive the six keyboard instructional set valued at $2,500 from SoCal Pianos (formerly The Piano Warehouse)
“We know that not every child who wants to learn piano has the means to pay for lessons, that’s why we wanted to reach out to our communities and give a system like this where we thought it would have the greatest impact,” said Dennis James, president of SoCal Pianos, which has stores in Palm Desert, Ontario and San Marcos. “Mr. Fergon’s letter about the needs and desires of students at Cielo Vista Charter really touched us, plus school families showed they were behind him by bringing in online votes.”
Cielo Vista Charter School is the only elementary school in Palm Springs Unified to have a fulltime music teacher. All students enjoy music classes each week and also participate in at least two performances each year.
“When I was a teen and managed to afford my own lessons, my piano teacher became my inspiration!” said Michael Fergon, Cielo Vista Charter music teacher and 2010 District Teacher of the Year. “She was the one who encouraged me to attend college and obtain a musical degree in education. Like her, I believe students can achieve their goals and dreams. Many of my students want to take private piano lessons, and it breaks my heart to know that they can’t afford it. I want to help them reach their dreams like I did 25 years ago.”
Cielo Vista became a charter school in 2010 after operating as a traditional public school within the Palm Springs Unified School District since 1952. CVC presently serves 800 students from the Palm Springs area in grades K-6. Seventy-nine percent of the student body is considered economically disadvantaged by state standards. The Cielo Vista community strives to create an environment that enhances the social, emotional, and intellectual growth of its students. CVC is fortunate to offer year-round music instruction. It is a privilege that many public schools do not have.
Cielo Vista Charter is led by principal Lynda Lake. The school’s governing board consists of David L. Baron, James Cioffi, Frank Tinney, William G. Kleindienst, and Mark Anderson. Cielo Vista Charter School is located at 650 South Paseo Dorotea in Palm Springs.
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