By Everett Brazil, III
The Newkirk Herald Journal
NEWKIRK — There will be many new faces at Newkirk Public Schools this coming school year, with teachers and other staff members retiring or transferring to a new district. Among the new teachers is Daniel Montalvo, who will take the reins of the school’s band program in his first role as an educator.
Montalvo replaces Joshua Faulkner, who left at the end of the school year.
Montalvo was raised in Ft. Worth, Texas, and while he said his family wasn’t overtly musical, his siblings were in the school band, which helped steer him toward a career in music.
“Both of my parents didn’t have the opportunity for music, they were from Puerto Rico, but both of my siblings were in band,” he said. “I loved the sound and environment, it was open and friendly, so I got hooked on it immediately.”
He studied music education and trumpet performance at Oklahoma State University, and between high school and college, learned many instruments, including trumpet, flute, clarinet, French horn, saxophone, bassoon, euphonium, tuba and percussion.
Having a degree in music performance can go a long way to a professional career, from education to performance and composition, such as with an orchestra. He chose education from his experience not just in high school, but also as a tutor in college.
“I’ve always enjoyed teaching private lessons throughout university. When I got into general classes, I loved it even more,” he said. “I definitely could have gone the symphonic route, but being a guiding force in goals made every day was less like work, and more enjoyable.”
Montalvo has never met Faulkner, but he has heard of his tenure at NPS, and looks forward to bringing his own stamp into the program.
“My goal for the program, moving forward, in the next three to four years, having the kids in major competitions, and keeping the concert setting going,” he said. “I also want to add more marching band to the program. I want the kids to have fun, and grow to have an appreciation of music.”
NPS may be his first role as an educator, but he already enjoys the school, and looks forward to working with the students.
“I like it here. I think the school definitely fosters a positive influence, and challenges them to reach their personal goals,” he said.
Although Montalvo is from Ft. Worth, he feels at home here having previously done his student teaching in Perry, a school well-known in Newkirk. He is ready to start the school year, and meet the families he will be serving.
“I am thrilled and excited to meet everyone. I’m excited to meet the parents and students, and I want to be a positive influence in the kids, and I think music is a powerful way to to that,” he said.