This week's News 8 Golden Apple Award winner teaches music and lessons about life. We surprise Amy Murrell at Irondequoit High School.
Miss Murrell is the driving force behind a very successful String Music Program in the West Irondequoit School District. With more than 80 students enrolled, they actually have two High School Orchestras.
Amy starts working with string players like Romel Williams in 7th grade. Romel is now a Junior. He says she gets to know them all well. "If you're just having a problem too, during the day she'll sit down with you, try to talk you through it and make you feel better, those kind of things. She helps us with much more than music."
High School Principal Patrick McCue says Amy always puts her kids first. "And she's not into being the diva, she wants them to be the center of attention and that really comes through. And I think that's one of the reasons why they stay with the program."
We surprised Miss Murrell while her students were writing music in the computer lab. It was crowded. Amy said "I have the best job in the world. All because of these guys right here. They're just fabulous. They want to be here. They work hard. They make coming to work fun."
Amy Murrell measures success two ways. By how well her students perform in the orchestra and how well they perform in the classroom. "And if you want to get specific, music is shown to help use more of the brain and help kids in Math and Science and reading, writing all of it."
I told Amy besides the minds of her students, she's has also touched their hearts. "Which is good to know, because they've also touched mine."
Amy Murrell is a News 8 Golden Apple Award winner. If you scroll down you can read the letter we got from Romel nominating her.
Dear News 8,
Miss Murrell is an amazing woman who teaches us not only about music, but about life. She takes the time to not only provide instruction but advice from everything to problems you may have at home or social drama that may arise. Her room has become a safe haven where students can be honest and open, while allowed to have artistic freedom.
I can remember specifically there was this girl who was extremely troubled and she was breaking down. After Miss Murrell took time out of her schedule to talk to this girl she was able to get through it and be okay. I can, from a personal stand point, attest to her extreme compassion and realistic approach to life, and dedication to us, her students. It would really please the entire student body if Miss. Murrell was recognized for her contributions to us and the amazing person she is everyday.
Junior, Irondequoit High School