P. O. BOX 2120

October 22, 1999


TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Paul D. Stapleton
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: State Song Subcommittee Seeks Input from School Community Regarding Selection of New State Song

This memorandum provides information regarding the 
mechanism through which citizens of Virginia are encouraged 
to participate in the selection of a new state song. 
Specifically, the State Song Subcommittee, chaired by 
Senator Emmett W. Hanger, Jr., invites the school community 
to listen to the eight grand finalist songs and provide 
feedback to the Subcommittee by late December.  

In 1998, the Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental 
Relations (ACIR) was directed by the General Assembly to 
establish a subcommittee "to make a recommendation to the 
Governor and the General Assembly for a new official state 
song" (House Joint Resolution 107).  The ACIR State Song 
Subcommittee announced the 1998 State Song Competition in 
July 1998. After three rounds of judging, the subcommittee 
has narrowed the field of more than 300 entries to eight 
grand finalists.  

Senator Hanger and members of the ACIR State Song 
Subcommittee would like to encourage broad participation in 
the final phase of the state song selection process. Input 
from the school community will help subcommittee members 
make a recommendation to the General Assembly for our new 
state song. The subcommittee also hopes that students in 
music classes will have the opportunity to learn the grand 
finalist songs and that these songs will be included in 
school performances.

The grand finalist songs are available on the Virginia 
State Song website at
To listen to the songs on this website, Real Audio Player
software must be installed. Information about downloading this software, 
free of charge, and a form for providing feedback to the 
State Song Subcommittee are both available on the website. 
An audio cassette tape of the eight grand finalist songs 
will be made available through the State Song Subcommittee 
for $2. Ordering information for the tape will be posted on 
their website.

The ACIR welcomes written comments about the grand finalist 
songs either by mail or electronically over the Internet. 
Participants may use the comment form on the state song Web 
site or send comments to the following address: Student 
Comment, ACIR, 900 E. Main Street, Suite 103, Richmond, VA 
23219. Additionally, Senator Hanger invites individual 
schools to send their comments from the school as a whole. 
For guidelines on planning and implementing a process to 
include school-wide participation in the State Song 
Contest, please contact the ACIR at the above address.

The State Song Subcommittee encourages every school 
community in the Commonwealth to participate in the 
historic process of selecting the new state song.  For 
further information, please contact Adele MacLean, 
Secretary, Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental 
Relations, at 804/786-6508 or Dr. Theresa F. Lee, 
specialist, Fine Arts/Music, Virginia Department of 
Education, at 804/786-8078, or by e-mail to