JOHNSTOWN — Parents and students in Johnstown are mad after the high school's number one music man is axed from the after school band programs. Earlier this week, the community held a massive parade in his honor and supporters turned out in droves at Thursday night's board meeting to press for his return.
In the lobby of most high schools you'll find trophy's for football and track, but in Johnstown it's all about the music. Dan Jones is the man behind all those awards.
“He's a role model and, I know I speak for myself as well as others, he's a hero,” said Brittaney Oathout, a member of the winter color guard, “He's given us someone to look up to, and in teenage years you need that positive influence.”
Oathout was one of roughly 100 students and parents who spent Thursday evening in the high school auditorium, fighting to get Jones his back.
we would love a happy ending to this for our children and our families and our community, he's important to us, thank you.
Only two days prior to the meeting, the crowd organized a massive rally for Jones downtown. On Thursday they were hoping it paid off, but the board put off deciding anything until next week.
The students, parents, and teachers who attended the meeting meeting say they're still clueless as to why the board delayed their decision. As for the board's view, they're remaining tight-lipped.
“In the realm of personnel I would be wrong to make any comment. I have to say no comment,” said school board president Robert Curtis.
Curtis admits he attended Tuesday night's rally, but says the board's ongoing discussion of the music program is not a sign that Jones will be reinstated. The board simply wants to make sure the program is running smoothly come fall.
For a school that's nationally recognized for its excellence in music, however, Jones' supporters say they'd be lost without their “music man”.To clarify, Jones still has his day job as music instructor at the school – he was just taken off the marching band, jazz band and winter color guard. Those programs are so important to the local community though, that his supporters have signed a 37-page petition to get him heading those again.