Photo by Chuck Hudson
Hampton City Schools music teacher Jerry Sowers has lifetime devotion to making music
Jerry Sowers has been a music teacher in Hampton City Schools for 15 years. However, music has been a part of his life since he was a teenager. He is presently the music teacher at Phillips Elementary School and a native of Newport News since 1980.
Sowers said he obtained his first guitar when he was 14 years old and began singing folk music. He has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in music theory and composition. In addition to teaching, Sowers has directed music programs in local churches for more than 40 years and has directed choirs of all ages (elementary, middle and high school ages), and various adult choirs and ensembles. In addition, he is on the board of Tidewater Friends of Acoustic Music, and he hosts two coffee houses at his church, Wesley United Methodist Church, where he is the minister of music.
Sowers has recorded two CDs over the past eight years. They each include original songs as well as traditional folk songs. The CD titles are “Simple and Free” and “Many Windows of the Heart.” He has also published articles, choral works, and a hand bell piece.
Sowers has been singing professionally as a folk music performer in various venues around Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky and Pennsylvania. He was recently featured in an article in the Daily Press.
“I write songs about life’s various situations, love, friends, my faith and family,” said Sowers.
Sowers won a regional singer/songwriter contest in September 2016, and opened for the Mike Aiken (Nashville country musician) show in Smithfield, VA. On March 19, 2017, he came in second in the Sea Level Festival Singer/Songwriter’s competition.
HCS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age or other protected classes in its programs and activities and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Robbin G. Ruth, Executive Director, Human Resources, One Franklin Street, Hampton, VA 23669 757-727-2000.
As stated in School Board Policy AC, Hampton City Schools (“HCS”) does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, gender, age, disability or other protected class in its programs, activities and employment practices and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. HCS also prohibits retaliation under School Board Policy GBAH for the purpose of interfering with a person’s rights and/or privileges under federal civil rights laws, which can include: (i) raising concerns with Division personnel about a civil rights violation; (ii) asserting a right or advocating for the rights of a student or employee under federal civil rights laws; or (iii) participating in a complaint investigation or related proceedings.
All individuals are encouraged to promptly report any incident they believe to be discrimination, harassment or retaliation in violation of HCS School Board Policy. All reports should be made to the HCS Compliance Officer, who also serves as the HCS Executive Director of Human Resources. Upon receiving a report of alleged discrimination, harassment or retaliation, the Compliance Officer shall promptly authorize an investigation into the complaint, determine whether the alleged act occurred, and determine whether any action must be taken to end or prevent further harassment, discrimination, or retaliation. For more information about this process, please review School Board Policy GBAB-R.Should you have any questions about these procedures or the contents of this notice, please contact Hampton City Schools Compliance Officer at: One Franklin Street, Hampton, VA 23669 or (757) 727-2300.
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Hampton City Schools (HCS) is committed to making its website accessible for all, including individuals with disabilities, and strives to ensure accessibility currently and as new technologies emerge. The division welcomes questions and feedback on the site’s accessibility at each development phase. By clicking on “Contact” at the upper right of the main webpage, all users are able to “Help Resolve a Concern,” “Share a Story,” “Provide Feedback,” and “Ask a Question.” Additionally, the Contact Us page provides direct email access to HCS Webmaster Vickie Carper, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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HCS WEBMASTER AND ACCESSIBILITY
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Our continuing goal is for the HCS website to be accessible to individuals with disabilities in compliance with the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and that statute's implementing regulations at 34 C.F.R. Part 104, and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and that statute's implementing regulations at 28 C.F.R. Part 35.
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