Stephen Richardson Receives 2024 MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award

Stephen Richardson - 2024 MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award Winner (CNW Group/MusiCounts)

Canada’s prominent music education charity, MusiCounts, has proudly declared Stephen Richardson from École St. Joseph School in Yellowknife, NT, as the esteemed recipient of the 2024 MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award. Presented by Anthem Entertainment, this award acknowledges Richardson’s exceptional dedication and innovative approach to music education.

Richardson’s music program at École St. Joseph School encompasses a wide range of musical disciplines, engaging students from kindergarten to grade 12. His curriculum includes music theory, concert band, choir, songwriting, music video creation, video game scoring, music production, rock band, piano, and African percussion. Additionally, he collaborates with Dene Elders to facilitate Indigenous drum making sessions, enriching students’ cultural experiences.

Kristy Fletcher, President of MusiCounts, commended Richardson’s commitment to bridging the gap between the music classroom and the industry, fostering a vibrant community of musicians and enthusiasts in Yellowknife. Richardson’s innovative teaching methods, fueled by student interests and the latest research, earned him this prestigious award.

Richardson’s achievement was announced during the 53rd Annual JUNO Awards live broadcast from Halifax, NS. As the first educator from the Northwest Territories to receive this honor, Richardson expressed deep gratitude to his family, colleagues, and students for their support and inspiration.

In his acceptance speech, Richardson emphasized the transformative power of music education and thanked MusiCounts and Anthem Entertainment for recognizing educators’ contributions to the field. He also highlighted the significance of inclusivity in his teaching, ensuring that all students, including those with exceptionalities, have access to quality music education.

Furthermore, Richardson actively contributes to his profession by mentoring colleagues, organizing artist visits, and advocating for inclusive practices. His educational journey, spanning from Nova Scotia to the Northwest Territories, reflects his dedication to empowering young learners through music.

Jason Klein, CEO of Anthem Entertainment, commended Richardson for his creative approach to music education, noting the profound impact of his mentorship on students, colleagues, and the community at large.

Since 2005, the MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award has celebrated outstanding music educators across Canada, thanks to the generous support of Anthem Entertainment. Richardson’s recognition underscores the vital role of music teachers in nurturing the next generation of artists, songwriters, and music professionals.

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