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Cassie Tackett

Director of Bands

Ms. Tackett is currently in her second year as Head Band Director at Parkhill Junior High School. Ms. Tackett is a native of the panhandle and grew up in Amarillo, TX. She earned a Bachelor's Degree in Music Education with concentration in clarinet studies from West Texas A&M University in 2008. During her time at WTAMU, she was a part of the marching band and the Symphonic Band. While in the Symphonic Band, she performed at the Texas Music Educators Association Clinic and Convention in San Antonio, TX.

Prior to her appointment at Parkhill, she served as the Head Band Director at Dr. Don P. Woolley Middle School (2020-2022) in Mesquite, Texas. Ms. Tackett had the pleasure of opening Woolley Middle School and leading the Honor Band to the school's first sweepstakes award in 2022. From 2018-2020, Ms. Tackett served as Head Band Director at Judge Frank Berry Middle School, also in Mesquite, Texas. While at Berry Middle School, the band saw exponential growth and retention in all grade levels. 

Before moving to Mesquite, Ms. Tackett served as the Head Band Director (2016-2018) and Assistant Band Director (2008-2016) at Port Isabel Junior High School in Port Isabel, TX. During her time in Port Isabel, Ms. Tackett led her ensembles to numerous sweepstakes awards. Her varsity band was awarded runner up in the Outstanding Performance Series "March Category" two years in a row. Ms. Tackett's clarinet students earned spots in the ATSSB and TMEA All Region Bands as well as the ATSSB All-State Band. 

Ms. Tackett is a member of the Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Bandmasters Association, as well as the Texas Music Adjudicators Association. 

In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her rescue pup, Rylee, reading and being a member of her book club, and making and selling polymer clay earrings.


Associate Director of Bands

Lauren Vandergriff

Ms. Vandergriff is in her second year at Parkhill Junior High. Originally from Plano, TX, Ms. Vandergriff discovered her love for music playing the French horn in her middle school band program. After moving to upstate New York, Ms. Vandergriff earned a spot in the New York All-State Symphony Orchestra. She came back to Texas for college, where she received a Bachelor of Music in Music Education at Southern Methodist University (as well as a minor in math!).

During her time at SMU, Ms. Vandergriff was a part of the Meadows School of the Arts Wind Ensemble and Symphony Orchestra. She studied horn with Greg Hustis and Haley Hoops of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.


Previously, Ms. Vandergriff served as an assistant band director in Denton ISD where she started the school’s first ever Jazz Band. Ms. Vandergriff is an active member of the Texas Music Educators Association as well as the Texas Bandmasters Association.

In her free time, she likes to play games with her friends and family and explore with her pup, Princess Peach!

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