Mr. Barker Announces Retirement

Dear Jeff Band Family,

It has been my honor and privilege to be working with the students, parents and staff of the Lafayette School Corporation band program since I came here from Tri-County in 1988. All of you have meant so much to me professionally but more importantly, personally all these years.  We have shared so many incredible moments from memorable performances, exciting trips and just working together and for that I will be eternally thankful. You have all taught me so much.   Much like our seniors who will graduate this spring into the next chapter of their lives, it is time for me as well. I will be retiring at the end of this school year. After 40 years of this wonderful profession teaching young people, it is time for me to turn this program over to the next person. This decision was very difficult as I never considered this a job, but my passion and extreme joy.  But it is time.  I have a family that would like to see their husband, father and Papa around more, I have fish to catch and some more Cubs games to attend!

I know that this band family will welcome and support the next director with the same love and care that you have given me and my family all of these years. We have shared incredible significant moments. Many of you have seen my own kids grow up and now my precious grandkids. We have shared some very difficult times together and leaned on each other. How can I ever thank all of you?  It has been an honor to work with so many families, even generations!!  (that is when you know it time to retire when a student says “oh, my Mom had you in Middle School”) There are so many people to thank and things I could say but that can be done at a later time, but please know that if you were a former student, parent, colleague or just a supporter of me from my days at Unity High School, Tri-County High School, Sunnyside Middle School or Jeff High School Band, I thank you with all my heart.  I have truly loved being your band director.

I know that the Lafayette School Corporation and the present incredible band staff will work hard so that everyone will know of all future plans as soon as possible. I am looking forward to finishing this semester of working with these great young people and making music together.  I hope to see you for many years to come proudly wearing my Jeff Band apparel, enjoying the talents of these great kids and seeing the many friends I have made all of these years.   I will always love this band.

My sincere and heartfelt thanks to all.

Go Jeff Band!!

Tom Barker