Sapulpa High School “Changes Direction” with Band Program

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Assistant Superintendent Johnny Bilby stands next to Band Director Craig Amendt in 2015. This week, the school decided to reassign Amendt to another position.

On Tuesday Sapulpa High School announced the reassignment of Band Director Craig Amendt from the Band and Instrumental Music Department to the Instructional Technology Department.

Sapulpa Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Johnny Bilby told the Sapulpa Times that the administration regularly reviews their programs to see if any improvements or changes should be made and that after evaluating the high school band, they decided “to go in a new direction.”

When asked whether there was any truth to the rumors that Amendt was involved with missing money or if he had had alcohol on campus, Bilby said no. He emphasized that any rumors circulating that Amendt was involved in illegal activity are absolutely false. “We can’t have anyone employed at the school at all that is involved in illegal activity,” he said.

Mr. Amendt is still employed with SPS, but in a new role in a different department in which he will help students repair their Chromebooks.

Public reaction to this change has been mixed, especially given the program’s success in recent years. In 2016 the band took state in OSSAA Double Sweepstakes. The following year, they played in the Veteran’s Day parade in NYC.

Bilby said they plan to begin an official search for Amendt’s replacement in early February. In the meantime, Assistant Band Director Whitney Yokum will serve as Interim Director.

Micah Choquette contributed to this story.

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E. B. Thompson

E. B. Thompson

Born and raised in Sapulpa, Elizabeth has a Bachelor’s degree in American Studies and is a former banker. She is thrilled to be back in her hometown with her husband Michael and to be contributing to The Sapulpa Times.