WHAT OUR SCHOOLS NEED ARE MORE TEACHERS LIKE BILL PHARRIS AND BOB BARR
If the teacher is the key to the quality of education, then we can only hope we’ll get more of them like Bill Pharris, who died Monday. Like my life, his was greatly and positively affected by a teacher, the late Jordan Vocational High band director and Columbus Symphony conductor Bob Barr.
Mr. Barr – all of his former students will forever call him Mr. Barr – taught both of us, at different times, the value of self-discipline and working collaboratively with others to achieve success. In my case, he also put me in touch with a mentor at WDAK Radio in Columbus who helped me get my start in broadcasting. In Bill’s case, he went on to become what Barr was, a music teacher who changed many young lives for the better.
Bill, who directed a number of high school bands, including Hardaway where my son had performed under the baton of David Gregory, another inspiring and entertaining tough band director who turned out championship bands and students. Bill also directed the Bob Barr Community Band for a year.
No matter whether it is music, or math, or any other subject, what we need are more teachers like Bill Pharris and his mentor and mine Bob Barr.