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FYI

Kim Hastings Named MusiCounts Teacher of the Year

Kim Hastings of Pioneer Middle School in Rocky Mountain House, AB, is the recipient of the 2019 MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award. Pictured here with Kristy Fletcher, Executive Director, MusiCounts.

Kim Hastings Named MusiCounts Teacher of the Year

By FYI Staff

Kim Hastings of Pioneer Middle School in Rocky Mountain House, AB, is the recipient of the 2019 MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award. Hastings was surprised in her classroom with the award by MusiCounts, current and former students, colleagues, friends, and family. 


"We are thrilled to present Kim Hastings with this year's MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award, to recognize the impact she has made on both her students and the music education community,” said Kristy Fletcher, Executive Director, MusiCounts. “She has worked tirelessly to make the music program at Pioneer Middle School accessible to all students, and her advocacy for music education has had a positive influence on curriculums at both the local and provincial level.”

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As the MusiCounts Teacher of the Year Award recipient, Hastings receives a $10,000 cash donation, a significant contribution to the Pioneer Middle School music program, and a crystal statuette based on the Juno Award design, and she will be honoured by Jann Arden at the Juno Gala Dinner & Awards on March 16, in London, ON. 

A fierce advocate for music education in schools, Hastings has been a music teacher for over 30 years, 27 of them at Pioneer Middle School. She is a two-time winner of the Rocky Mountain House Mayor’s Award for Contribution to the Arts, and her school bands and ensembles have won many accolades and awards at the regional, provincial and national levels. Seventy-five percent of Pioneer Middle School students participate in her classes, some of whom have gone on to become music teachers themselves. 

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Celine Dion
Courtesy Photo

Celine Dion

Pop

Celine Dion Battled Extreme Muscle Spasms From Stiff-Person Syndrome With Dangerously High Doses of Valium: ‘It Could Have Been Fatal’

The singer opened up about her decade-long struggle with the rare neurological disorder in Tuesday night's (June 11) primetime NBC special.

Celine Dion was so desperate to alleviate the pain from severe muscle spasms during her secret, nearly two-decade-long battle with the rare neurological and autoimmune disease Stiff-Person Syndrome that she took near-lethal doses of Valium in search of relief. In her one-hour primetime NBC special on Tuesday night (June 11), Dion said she took up to 90 milligrams of the medication used to treat anxiety, seizures and muscle spasms, an amount that is more than twice the recommended daily dose.

“I did not know, honestly, that it could kill me. I would take, for example before a performance, 20 milligrams of Valium, and then just walking from my dressing room to backstage — it was gone,” Dion said of the instant pain relief the medication offered at levels, however that “could have been fatal” if she’d continued at that pace. “At one point, the thing is, that my body got used to it at 20 and 30 and 40 [milligrams] until it went up. And I needed that. It was relaxing my whole body. For two weeks, for a month, the show would go on… but then you get used to [and] it doesn’t work anymore.”

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