Van Hise Music Teacher Receives First Madison Symphony Educator Award

by Kiara Lee, age 13

Margaret Jenks, music teacher at Van Hise Elementary school, accepted the first Award for Excellence in Music Education from the Madison Symphony Orchestra earlier this Spring. Created in partnership with Ward-Brodt Music, this award recognizes a passionate, dedicated, and innovative educator who positively effects the lives of students. Jenks received a commemorative plaque and a $500 prize.

Jenks' teaching career has been varied. After a short term in Germany, she established the Bridge Ensemble at Butler Middle School in Waukesha, Wisconsin. This creative progam pairs cognitively disabled students with gifted ones. Currently, Jenks creates and teaches introductory choir programs for Madison Youth Choirs and runs two of the performing boys' choirs. Jenks also servres as chairwoman of the Wisconsin Comprehensive Musicianship Through Performance project.

Jenks cherishes the chance to teach in a classroom and to meet students she may not otherwise see outside of her class. According to the Wisconsin State Journal, students say they look forward to coming to school on the days they have her music class. One student said Jenks “makes everyone feel special." Another student said she “makes us recognize the beauty in music.”

[Source: Wisconsin State Journal]

Congrats to Ms. Jenks! How exciting! We are lucky to have such a wonderful teacher in our schools. – MckennaMadison, WI (2017-01-10 17:17)
It sounds like Mrs. Jenks has really accomplished a lot throughout her career. This is very exciting news! – CeciMATC (2017-01-10 17:18)