Daniel Foster of Roscoe has been a band teacher at Belvidere High School for eight years. His nominator said, "As an advocate of the music arts, Dan helps fuel a passion for music and appreciation to his students." These students come with varying backgrounds and degrees of ability and interest. He strives to meet them where they are, yet to also provide opportunities for them to advance. This can mean one-on-one assistance outside school hours for those who struggle or seeking outside professionals to work with those excelling beyond their peers."Academic growth is only a part of what I am committed to as a teacher; I also strive to help develop my students with respect to their whole selves." He has led students to growth opportunities by trying new instruments and by taking on leadership roles. His students can even take ownership of their work by helping plan content and musical selections. "There are a multitude of students who just needed to know they belonged to a family of musicians during times of great duress in their personal lives. For these students, the sub curriculum of 'being human first' becomes just as important as whether or not they can play a chromatic scale." The fruit of his and his students' efforts are publicly visible through performances which are held at many community events, graduations, schools, parades and musicals. They also participate in several area competitions, after which, they reflect upon what was learned and how they can improve. BHS Choral director Mark Miller, who has worked with Foster for two years, noted how Foster has helped guide the Performing Arts department to becoming a unit that collaborates exceptionally well. "Yes, he works tirelessly to create high-caliber performances with his bands, but he never loses sight amidst the chaotic rehearsal schedules of his commitment to keep the students the central focus of every lesson." Principal Billy Lewis also recommended Foster by saying, "If the goal of classroom learning is for students to apply their learning, utilize creativity and be part of something larger than they could be on their own, then Mr Foster meets this goal time and again."