Welcome to the DASD Music Department
Dover Area School District is a mid-sized, rural public school district located in south central Pennsylvania serving approximately 3,500 students. The DASD Music Department consists of eight full-time highly qualified music educators that provide instruction to nearly every student through musical offerings. For the past several years Dover Area School District has been recognized as one of the best communities in the United States for Music Education.
MISSION, VISION, VALUES
Mission: The Music Department in the Dover Area School District will instill in every student the skills, knowledge and technical abilities to become lifelong consumers of music.
Vision: We envision a community that embraces and participates in music opportunities leading to an enhanced civic life.
Values: Community, Collaboration, Diversity, Leadership, Musical Excellence, Aesthetic Appreciation
The Dover Music Department was started in the early 1940’s by Mr. Harry Reber who instruct music classes, chorus and orchestra. In 1947, Mr. Reber was asked to start a band so they would be able to play at soccer games. The band was very well received by the community. Unfortunately the following year the orchestra was eliminated from the curriculum. There have only been five directors of the high school bands during the past 70 years. They are:
Harry Reber, Jr.
The choirs of DASD have always had a reputation for musical excellence. Renaissance, our select choir at the high school, was started by Mr. Jeffery Snyder in 1975. Since that time they have received many honors and accolades for being a superior ensemble. The group was selected to sing in the White on two different occasions. Renaissance has also performed in Carnegie Hall three times. Directors of Renaissance have included;
The very strong jazz program in the district led to the establishment of a high school jazz choir. “Standard 12” was created in 2016 by Ms. Roberts to provide the vocal students an opportunity to perform music of the jazz genre. The group has received Superior rating at vocal jazz festivals throughout the state.
George Bradshaw: Mr. Bradshaw, a graduate of Eastern York High School, obtained his Bachelor’s of Music in Music Education degree from Mansfield University. While at Mansfield he studied trumpet under Dr. Michael Galloway and wind conducting under Mr. Donald Stanley. In 2002 Mr. Bradshaw obtained a Master’s Degree in Music Education from Duquesne University. Since 1995, George has conducted the Twin Rose Community Band, a local ensemble made up of musicians from the ages of 15-85 that performs over 20 concerts annually. Mr. Bradshaw’s awards include the DisneyHand Award, Who’s Who Among America’s High School Teachers, and the Outstanding Young Pennsylvanian Award. Currently, he teaches 9th-12th Symphonic Band, Concert Band, House Band, Dominants, Marching Band, Guitar I and II, Music History I and II, History of Jazz and Rock, and Music Technology at Dover Area High School.
Samantha Roberts: Miss Roberts, a 2009 graduate of Dover High School, obtained her Bachelor’s of Music in Music Education degree from Mansfield University. While at Mansfield, she studied voice under Dr. Todd Ranney and choral conducting under Dr. Peggy Dettwiler. In 2016, Miss Roberts obtained a Master’s of Science degree in Education with a concentration in teacher leadership from Walden University. Currently, she teaches 9th-12th Concert Choir, Festival Choir, Women’s Choir, Men’s Ensemble, Renaissance, Standard 12, Piano I and Piano II, Guitar, and Voice Class at Dover Area High School.
Seth Keller: Mr. Keller, a 2009 graduate of Dover High School, obtained his Bachelor’s of Music in Music Education degree from Mansfield University. While attending Mansfield, he studied French horn with Rebecca Dodson-Webster and instrumental conducting with Dr. Adam Brennan. Mr. Keller was awarded the 2014 New Teacher of the Year for the Clark County School District in Las Vegas Nevada. In 2016, Mr. Keller obtained a Master’s of Science degree in Education with a concentration in teacher leadership from Walden University. Currently he teaches 6th, 7th and 8th grade bands, jazz band, and general music at Dover Area Middle School.
Sara Robbins: Ms. Robbins, a 2009 graduate of Danville Area High School, obtained her Bachelor’s of Music in Music Education degree from Mansfield University in 2013. During her time at Mansfield, she studied voice under Dr. Youngsuck Kim and choral conducting under Dr. Peggy Dettwiler. After graduating, Ms. Robbins taught general music in the Clark County School District in Las Vegas, Nevada, before returning to Pennsylvania. Currently, she teaches grades 6-8 choirs, Select Ensemble, and general music at Dover Area Middle School.
Stephanie Haifley: Mrs. Haifley, a 1993 graduate of Littlestown High School, earned a Bachelors of Music Education degree from Mansfield University in 1997. While at Mansfield, Mrs. Haifley studied voice under Dr. Kim. In 2002, she obtained a Masters of Education degree from Shippensburg University. Mrs. Haifley started her teaching career in the Northeastern School District in 1998. She has been teaching Elementary Music in the Dover Area School District since 1999. Mrs. Haifley was profiled in the 23rd and the 27th Editions of Who’s Who of American Women, the First Edition of Who's Who of Emerging Leaders, the 8th Edition of Who's Who in American Education, the 62nd Edition of Who's Who in America, the 2012 Edition of Who’s Who among Executives and Professionals, and the Cambridge Who's Who. She received the Outstanding Teacher Award for the 2003-2004 school year. Currently, Mrs. Haifley teaches K-6 General Music, grades 4-6 instrumental lessons, 5/6 band, and 5/6 chorus at Dover Elementary School.
Hayley Bowser: Ms. Bowser, a 2016 graduate of New Oxford High School, obtained her Bachelor’s of Music in Music Education degree from Messiah College in 2020. While at Messiah, she studied saxophone under Dr. Todd Goranson and wind conducting with Dr. James Colonna. Currently, Ms. Bowser teaches K-5 general music, instrumental music, and vocal music at Leib Elementary School.
Isaac Hawkins: Mr. Hawkins, a graduate of Steelton-Highspire High School, obtained a Bachelor of Music Education degree from the Sunderman Conservatory of Music at Gettysburg College. While at Gettysburg, he studied clarinet with Dr. Aaron Scott, instrumental conducting with Dr. Russell McCutcheon and choral conducting with Dr. Brent Talbot. Mr. Hawkins is an active performer in pit orchestras throughout central Pennsylvania and with the Greater Harrisburg Concert Band. Currently, he teaches K-6 general music, band and chorus at North Salem Elementary School.
Patrick Ishler: Mr. Ishler, a graduate from Bald Eagle Area High School, earned a B.S. in Education concentrating in Music Education from Clarion University, Clarion, PA. While at Clarion, Mr. Ishler studied voice with Professor Milutin Lazich and symphonic conducting with Dr. Stanley Michalski. Mr. Ishler earned a Master’s in Music Education degree from Shenandoah Conservatory, Winchester, VA and continued his education by earning a Master’s in Educational Administration, as well as Principal’s Certification, from Temple University. Mr. Ishler directs the choirs at St. Edward’s Episcopal Church, Lancaster, PA. Currently, Mr. Ishler teaches K-6 Music, Band and Chorus at Weigelstown Elementary School.
Awards and Recognition
The Dover community has been recognized by the National Association of Music Merchandisers (NAMM) as being one of the Best Communities for Music Education in the nation. The ensembles of the music department are proud to be ambassadors for the Dover community.
Music department ensembles at each level have been recognized at state and national levels for their musical excellence. Our ensembles have performed at;
- PMEA Conference
- PA State Capitol
- White House
- Carnegie Hall, NY
- Hollywood Christmas Parade, CA
- Pacific Life Holiday Bowl, San Diego
- Big Bay Balloon Parade, San Diego
- Waikiki Holiday Parade, HI
- Pearl Harbor Performance, HI
K-6 General Music Class, 5th and 6th Grade Chorus, 5th and 6th Grade Band, Jazz Band, 7th Grade General Music Class, 7th Grade Chorus, 7th Grade Band, 8th Grade Chorus, 8th Grade Band, 7th and 8th Grade Select Vocal Ensemble, Festival Choir, Concert Choir, Men’s Ensemble, Women’s Choir, Renaissance, Standard 12, Concert Band, Symphonic Band, House Band, Dominants, Marching Band, Piano Class (Piano I, Piano II), Guitar Class (Guitar I, Guitar II), Voice Class, Music Technology, Music History (Music History II available for college credit), Music Theory (Music Theory I, Music Theory II), History of Jazz and Rock
Music Education Advocacy
Benefits of Music (Brain Development, Math/Spatial Reasoning, Reading/Verbal Skills, Academic Achievement, Successful Schools, and Social and Emotional Development)
The Benefits of Music Education (Success in Society, Success in School, Success in Developing Intelligence, and Success in Life)
How playing an instrument affects your brain by Anita Collins