Arts educator William A. Virchis, the first Director of Visual and Performing Arts for the Sweetwater Union High School District, was selected by the California Association for Music Education, Southern Border Section, as its “Administrator of the Year.”
The local music association’s president, Russ Sperling, said that Virchis received the award for his steadfast support of music education. Virchis will be honored at the association’s award ceremony, Fortissimo!, that will be held May 1 at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego in La Jolla.
“I am extremely proud to have this honor and deeply humbled,” Virchis said. “This award is a recognition of a team and not an individual effort. Without the support of a great Board of Trustees, administration, faculty, parents, students and especially my staff, this recognition would have never happened. We are proud to make Sweetwater schools a model for all the nation when it comes to the VAPA curriculum and program.”
Virchis has been compiling a list of honors. In February 2006, he was selected by the Eastlake Optimist Club of Chula Vista as their School Administrator “Optimist of the Year.”
Virchis is a former professor and Artistic Director with Southwestern Community College- a career that spanned more than 30 years. He has directed professional and amateur theatre productions at various local, state, national and international venues. His status in the national and international arts community com-plements his leadership within San Diego County.
A key, Virchis says, is ensuring that visual and performing arts courses enjoy the core academic status they rightfully deserve. To this end, VAPA programs have contributed to higher test scores, increased retention and lasting contributions to exemplary learning environments. Publication of this data has been used state-wide to support advocacy for arts programs.