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Joan Ashcraft (left), creator of Opening Minds Through the Arts and currently the Director of Fine Arts for the Tucson Unified School District, with Richard Leek (right), an orchestral teacher for the OMA program and TUSD.

In cooperation with Tucson Values Teachers, Arizona Public Media presents "Teachers' Voices". These conversations between educators, their peers, and their students focus on the real experiences they face each day in Arizona's schools and classrooms.

The Opening Minds through the Arts program was created in 1999 through the hard-work and vision of Joan Ashcraft.

Two years later, OMA incorporated the violin into its math, science and language arts lessons and it chose Richard Leek to teach violin to all OMA students. Richard, has dedicated over 40 years teaching in the Tucson Unified School District and has spent 44 seasons with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra.

On this week's Teachers' Voices, hear Richard tell Joan about how one gifted OMA violinist changed his life forever.

Arizona Spotlight airs Fridays at 8:30 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. and Saturdays at 7:00 p.m. on KUAZ Radio (89.1 FM/1550 AM).

View more stories on the Teachers Voices page.