Kathleen’s Music Academy
I know policies are no fun, but they are necessary to ensure things run smoothly for everybody. Below are policies that are in line with the standard practices followed by music schools throughout the country and congruent with the standards held by the Music Teachers National Association. If you have any questions about any of the policies below or questions about things you think I've left out, feel free to notify me.
Students with involved parents are often more successful than those with uninvolved parents. The learning triangle of parent, student, and teacher forms a strong team that is working together toward the student’s growth and success. I have an open-door policy at the studio and I always welcome parents to attend lessons and ask questions. With lessons on Zoom, parents can call me, best times are in the mornings. If I do not answer, please leave a message and I will call you right back. It is recommended that parents attend lessons of beginners to observe my teaching strategies. It is required for parents to attend lessons for students under the age of 5 to help support the learning triangle and help these younger students at home.
Lessons are prepaid only; parents need to keep accounts current to keep students on the teaching schedule. If lessons are not paid, students will be removed from the teaching calendar. It is recommended that parents help students follow their responsibilities below.
Responsibilities of young students include always putting forth their best efforts and being open to new ideas. As they grow up, they can take on the responsibility for practicing without having to be reminded and, later, for arriving promptly for lessons, with all lesson and assignment books in hand.
If students have written assignments like Theory, Four Star Books, Note Speller Books, they need to keep these assignments up to date or progress will stop in the lesson and Repertoire books. Conservatory students must have these books completed weekly and completed and graded before their exams. Teachers need 30 days before exams to grade books. If students fall behind in these books, they will be worked on during lessons until they are completed.
If the student takes lessons remotely, they need to be in the waiting room at least 5 mins prior to their lesson time with all lesson materials organized and next to them. Once they arrive in the waiting room they must physically stay at their computer or device in the waiting room when the teacher moves them into the classroom. If the teacher moves the students into the classroom and they are not physically at their device the teacher will wait only 5 mins before ending the lesson. Students must have their videos and microphones on during the entire lesson. This is a requirement. Devices used for lessons must be charged at 100% when the lesson begins so it does not die during the lesson. The camera must be at a distance where the teacher can see the student’s entire body so posture and dynamics can be monitored. Dynamics (loud-soft musical sounds) cannot be heard when the device is too close to the student. The Zoom access number does not change.
Zoom Lesson Access 456-559-1446 Password 1977
Students will not receive a link with the access numbers after their first lesson, please write down the classroom access number and password inside your lesson book. The opportunities for students are unlimited which will be achieved with the work they invest in their music program.
Students that participate with the Royal Conservatory of Music Program will have a separate set of responsibilities that their teacher will review with them.
The studio calendar runs from January to January. Lessons are scheduled for 12 months out of the year. When you register as a student with the studio, you are committing to attend lessons for the entire year. Makeup lessons for vacations need to be rescheduled. Your commitment is for the year. Most studios do not offer makeup lessons.
Studio lesson length options are (30-, 60-, 120-, minute lessons)
Students must register online at: http://www.kathleensmusicacademy.com as a first step.
Once registered, Ms. Kathleen will contact the registered student to move forward to see if there is an opening available.
Once registered and changed to an “active” student, students are committed to the policies in this document.
The studio accepts students ages 3 and up. Parents must stay with the students for the younger (ages 3-6) students during the lessons at the studio and online to help the student work on the material at home. Parents are always welcomed to attend lessons and grandparents as well.
Withdraw request must be given in writing 30 days in advance of departure date. Account balances must be paid two weeks prior to your departure date. Rentals instruments must be paid in full and returned one week prior to your departure date. All loaned books must be returned one week prior to your departure date. If rentals, loaned books and misc items are not returned, your account will be billed the replacement cost for items not returned. Damages to rental instruments will be billed the day following the return date and must be paid prior to students departure date.
Missed Lessons and Attendance Policies
Your weekly lesson time has been reserved for you and is unavailable to any other students, therefore monthly payment is neither reduced or refunded due to missed lessons.
Makeup lessons are offered only when a student gives at least 24 hours’ notice of the cancellation only. Cancellations less than 24 hours’ notice will not receive a makeup lesson credit.
If a scheduled makeup lesson is cancelled, or missed, another makeup option will not be offered, and the time slot used for the scheduled makeup lesson will be billed to the student’s account. Makeup lessons are scheduled on the teacher’s free time so when a student does not show up the time will get billed to the students account.
Last year Ms. Kathleen used 487 hours of her personal time doing makeup lessons. Ms. Kathleen takes off 7 vacation day a year, so using 487 hours of her free time for student Make Up lessons is excessive and not fair to her family.
This year, there is a limit of 6 makeup lessons per student. Lessons that are cancelled after the 6 makeup credits are used, missed or cancelled; any rescheduled lessons will be billed to accounts. This process is automatic in the studio scheduling and accounting program.
Holding your time Slot – if you pay your monthly fee, your time slot is guaranteed. Of course, weekly attendance is preferred and essential to progress, but if payment for the month has been received there is no penalty for missed lessons. If you pay your monthly fee, your time slot is guaranteed. Of course, weekly attendance is preferred and essential to progress, but if payment for the month has been received there is no penalty for missed lessons. If you decide to drop off the schedule, following the withdrawal policies, you will give up your lesson slot. When you return, you will be placed back into the schedule as a new student or on the waiting list based on availability. If you leave for a month in the summer and you wish to keep your spot on the calendar, you can do that if that month is paid. Ms. Kathleen will make an exception for summer vacations to the 6 makeup lesson limit since many travel overseas for a month in the summer.
Auto pay is the only payment method for the studio. (credit or debit cards) A payment source must be on file in your account for the payment to be auto paid on the 1st of each month. If a payment source is not in your account to accommodate the auto pay feature, your student will be removed from the teaching schedule.
If your payment does not get posted on the 1st of the month, a late fee will be posted on your account.
Parents can login into their accounts prior to the 1st at any time and look at the detail that will be billed on the 1st. Lessons are prepaid only.
Music and Materials
Royal Conservatory of Music books will be billed to accounts once the student has received them. If books need to be ordered the payment will need to be made prior to ordering.
Students requested sheet music, songs and music books that are purchased by the studio, will be charged and posted to the students accounts. The price of individual sheet music has grown to a price the studio can no longer cover.
Recommended stores or web sites for purchasing music and materials - I receive store and teacher credits for instruments, music and music items so if you are going to be purchasing something let me know and I can price it for you and see if I can get it cheaper for you. I studio can save students anywhere from 10-30 %.
Needed Equipment & Rentals
String Instruments, Violins, Violas, Cellos, - Must be sized to each student and can be rented by the Studio – Call for additional information.
Classical Guitars – Must be sized and studio has them to rent also.
Acoustic Piano is required for the Royal Conservatory of Music Certificate Program. – Pianos must be tuned every 6-12 months.
Digital Pianos must have weighted keys so students can play their dynamics which allows them to control playing from soft to loud by the pressure the use with their fingers on the keys, they need 88 keys, they also need a sustain pedal. The weighted keys and pedal are a requirement. A button on the keyboard that controls the volume will not work for soft to loud. Students need to always have both hands on the keys.
Metronome (actual or app)
Tablet and apps – Instrument specific
Computer software – Instrument specific
Listening device and listening list – recorder
Practice requirements – Students should practice at least 30- 60 mins everyday and the actual requirements are defined based on level. Your teacher will tell you how much daily practice your student should be investing. The conservatory program practice guidelines are provided below.
Practice schedules – It is recommended that you create a practice schedule. Students should always practice at the same time every day. If they don’t have time after school, before school seems to be a great time for many students. Early morning the brain is at it’s best!
Practice charts – It is recommended to create or print out from the internet a practice chart for younger students so they can see their weekly progress. It makes a great reminder for practice time.
Sitting in on lessons – Parents sitting in during lessons shows the students that their music studies are important and that it matters that they practice.
Involvement in program activities (recitals, assessments, etc.)
Logistics and Studio Guidelines (Post Covid)
Parking – at the studio, you can only park directly in front of my home. Please do not park in my neighbors’ grass, he has had to replant his front yard twice due to students parking in his yard. Do not block my mail box or driveway and do not park in my driveway. There is plenty of street parking on both sides of my home. My husband comes home from work late afternoon and parks in the driveway. He also must back into the driveway so please don’t park too close to the driveway. He has a glass eye and can only see on the one side. Our mailman is also a real treat and refuses to deliver our mail if the box is blocked which I do understand but my husband has a business and has time sensitive mail that can’t be delayed otherwise we wouldn’t care.
Waiting area – Please wait in your car until your lesson time. Do not enter the house before your lesson time because it disrupts the students lesson time prior to yours and I will need to take that time out of your lesson time. I can not add that time to the back of your lesson time. But I will need to add the time they lose for the interruption to the beginning to your lesson time. If you need to order something or schedule something, please send me a text or email. Before and after lessons is not the time to do that.
Food and beverages – Please feed your students snacks and a drink prior to bringing them to their lesson because no food or drinks are allowed in the studio.
Restrooms – If you student uses the restroom, please make sure they flush the toilet, turn off the faucet, and turn off the light and shut the door. The bathroom door lock is not to be used please.
Students are to stay in the studio space and can not go into the private living area of the home.
Students can look at the instruments in the studio but cannot touch.
Royal Conservatory of Music
Certificate Program – Go to https://www.rcmusic.com/ for additional information or ask Ms. Kathleen for additional information.
Exams are held at Broward College - During Covid Exams are being held on Zoom
Spring and Winter Exams - Individual Dates for Students – Set dates will return when we return to the college.
2021-2022 Studio Holidays
Lessons will not be held on the following holidays:
Summer Break - TBD One Week in June/July
Winter Holiday - TBD
New Year’s Holiday