RHS Has a New Band Teacher, Tim Kohring

— Gabrielle Ryan • August 2017

Rolesville High School is welcoming a new member to its music department, Tim Kohring. After teaching band at Rolesville Middle School for four years, Kohring has taken a position as band teacher at RHS. He says he is excited to begin teaching at a newer school.

Timothy Kohring

Timothy Kohring

Kohring, who also is a conductor with the Triangle Youth Orchestra since July 2008, comes to Rolesville High armed with honors including Teacher of the Year at both North Garner Middle (2011) and Rolesville Middle (2015). In July 2014, he earned he earned his National Board Certification, and in February 2016, he was a semi-finalist for Wake County Teacher of the Year. A graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill in 2004 with a Bachelor in Music (Music Performance) and again in 2005 with a Masters of Arts in Music Education, he spent 12 years teaching middle school band.

This will be his first time teaching at a high school, and Kohring says he has always been intrigued by high school brains.

“High school brains think longer-term than the middle school brain does … a lot more creative because they have more of a base of knowledge,” Kohring said. “Since they have more experience and knowledge to draw from, they can come to conclusions that are a lot more complicated. … They can sometimes come up with conclusions that I didn’t think of.”

For example, he said, a student of his was put in charge of signing up students in class for a trip to a drum corps show. The student had come back with a signup spreadsheet that included phone numbers and a way to collect money for the trip. That proved to be an example of how Kohring enjoys helping to point the direction and watching students run with it.

When Kohring was asked what he wished to accomplish while at RHS, he gave an unusual answer. “Unnecessary,” he said. His goal, he said, is to make everything that happens in the band room happen whether he is in there or not.

“My job is to teach students how to be their own leaders, their own educators, how to be their own musicians,” Kohring said.

As an example, he cited a program in South America where older students teach younger students, and by the time the younger students become the older, they’re better than the older students were. Kohring believes his job is to empower his students to do this in ways not limited to music.

Dhedra Lassiter, principal of RHS, said she believes what empowers Kohring’s teaching abilities and style with the students is that he “lives and breathes music,” and even more than his love for music is his commitment to the growth of students. She expects that Kohring will bring a high level of expectation to the RHS band.

“His standards are high for his students, but not more so than they are for himself,” Lassiter said.

Adriene Vaglio, Kohring’s former co-worker and a dance teacher at RMS, also sees that Kohring creates high expectations in his classroom and will not allow his students to fail. Another thing she believes Kohring will be able to accomplish at RHS is giving his students a love for music.

Kohring said his decision to get into music was his fun band classes growing up. He would go on trips with the band and compete with the group as well as individually. Music was big in Kohring’s family, too. Although he admits that his mother was terrible at playing instruments, his father was a drummer. In first grade, Kohring asked to play the piano and played that up to sixth grade, when he started to play in the band.

Kohring decided to be a music teacher due to his own music teachers growing up. His band teachers were always his favorite teachers, and they instilled a lot of what he believes made him who he is.

“They always seemed to be having fun,” Kohring said. “What better job to do than one you’re going to have fun doing?”