Chip Staley

Chip Staley

Fine Arts Chair (Retired)
Neuqua Valley High School


Charles "Chip" Staley directs the Wind Symphony at the Merit School of Music in Chicago. He teaches graduate classes at Vandercook College of Music, serves as an Educational Clinician for Conn-Selmer and is the Founder and President of ARTSpeaks, Inc.

Staley began his teaching career at Eisenhower High School in Blue Island, Illinois, before moving to Waubonsie Valley High school in Aurora. Transferring to Naperville’s Neuqua Valley High School when it opened in 1997, he served as Fine Arts Department Chair before retiring from public school teaching in 2015.

Bands and orchestras under Staley’s direction have performed at the Midwest Clinic, Chicago’s Orchestra Hall, the University of Illinois’ Krannert Center and at venues in the People’s Republic of China, England, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Hungary and the Czech Republic. The Merit School of Music Wind Symphony will be a featured performer at the 2019 Illinois Music Educators Conference and share a concert with the University Illinois Wind Symphony at Krannert Hall on May 1, 2019.

Staley is the recipient of the ASBDA Distinguished Band Director Award, the ILMEA Mary Hoffman Excellence in Teaching Award, the CYSO Music Inspiration Award, the John Philip Sousa Foundation’s Sudler Flag of Honor and the John Paynter Lifetime Achievement Award.

Under Staley’s leadership, Neuqua Valley High School was twice recognized by the GRAMMY® Foundation as the National GRAMMY® Signature School and was awarded the 2009 John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts National Schools of Distinction in Arts Education Award.

Staley is a National Board Certified Teacher and holds degrees from the University of Wisconsin and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Advocacy: Music is an essential component of a comprehensive education


This clinic will address how to form a grassroots organization to help solidify the status of music as a core offering in public schools. The organization "ARTSpeaks" will serve as an exemplar as participants discuss ways to change the paradigm in their community from "music is nice to have" to "music is essential for student success".

Build and Maintain and Enduring High Quality Music Program


This clinic will engage music educators in ways to set priorities for building the infrastructure needed to provide quality music education for all students. Participants will learn strategies to improve classroom instruction, authentically engage building administration, and cultivate a community of stakeholders dedicated to cementing the essential role music plays as a core curricular offering.

How to get an Excellent Rating


This clinic will explore the "new" excellent rating according to the Danielson Method used to evaluate teachers. Examples of Proficient and Excellent lessons will be presented in order to best understand the difference between the two ratings.

Measuring Student Growth in the Music Classroom


It is the very nature of music performance classes that music teachers constantly monitor student progress toward achievable goals. This clinic will address how to develop assessments that will generate the data needed to demonstrate student growth to administrators without derailing the rehearsal process. Participants will learn to develop assessments that isolate specific skills, and are simple to administer and collect data.

Note Grouping, Phrasing and Line


Using David McGill’s Sound in Motion: A Performer’s Guide to Greater Musical Expression this clinic will define motion in music and explore harmonic, rhythmic and motivic grouping. Standard wind literature will be used as examples of musical line as implied by function, structure, phrasing and the four elements of music: meter, rhythm, melody and harmony.