Aine Wendler Piano Studio Policies

Kansas City Piano Lessons - Studio Policies

My Responsibilities

I will, to the very best of my ability, treat every student as an individual, providing a positive and enthusiastic atmosphere for learning.

Student & Family Responsibilities

Students agree to arrive at each lesson punctually, well-prepared, and with their assignment books and music. To make good progress, daily quality practice is necessary. I want you to completely understand every assignment; please ask questions.

If something is happening at home or school that is affecting your child please let me know. Please err on the side of letting me know more so I can be sensitive to the needs of your child.

All students are required (in as much as I am in a position to require) to participate at the two recitals we have each year: the Holiday Recital in December and the Spring Recital.

Students are strongly encouraged to have an acoustic or full digital, piano at home. Keyboards are not instruments – they are computers and, except for utilizing a keyboard for the first 90 days of lessons, they are not interchangeable as a replacement for a piano. You are making an investment in providing lessons for your child.  A “real” piano maximizes that investment.  Please see me for options in obtaining a piano – pianos are readily available at very low cost. I will be happy to advise you on this matter.

Commitment

When students enroll, they are reserving their place in the studio for the entire year. Students are also expected to register for summer lessons – students lose momentum and skills developed through the school year when stopping for the summer.  Stopping for summer forfeits the students spot on the studio schedule unless the time slot is paid for during the student’s absence. The enrollment is a firm commitment and guarantees your place in the studio.

Tuition

Tuition is factored as a yearly tuition divided into monthly installments.  The tuition covers 40-42 billable lessons per year with the “off weeks” covering holiday breaks, vacations, occasional sick day, etc. Tuition does not change from month to month as the “off weeks” are already factored into the total number of lessons for the year. Please see Summer Scheduling Policy listed below under Cancellations heading.

The following are breaks included in the tuition schedule and are not subject to make-up lessons or tuition credit:

  • Thanksgiving week

  • Christmas and New Year Weeks

  • Spring Break

  • Memorial Day (the week leading up to or the week after depending on the calendar)

  • The 2 weeks leading up to Labor Day (lessons for the new school year commence the day after Labor Day).

  • Absence for attending festivals, competitions, and other performances with students (ex. MAMA or Scholarship Auditions)

The monthly tuition installment is due before, or at, the first lesson of the month.  Tuition payments received after the 10th of the month are subject to a $25.00 late fee.

What Tuition Covers

Tuition covers not only the actual lesson time spent with the student, but the time preparing for each student as well.

This includes
•    An individualized plan for each student’s course of study
•    Written progress reports for each child upon request or conference
•    Development of teaching materials
•    Training and experience
•    Recital, event, and competition preparation and repertoire planning
•    Professional affiliations
•    Music library

Registration Fee

Each student pays a yearly registration fee of $50.00 which is due with the September tuition for returning students or at the time of enrollment for new students.  For families with more than one enrolling child, the fee will be $35.00 for the second, and each additional, child. This pays for the Student Assignment Book, copy and printing expenses as well as the time spent doing things that apply to your child besides actual teaching:  lesson plans, goal planning, enrollment in special events, recitals, scheduling, bookkeeping, and time spent on emails and telephone calls.  NOTE: after April 15, and before September, the Registration fee will be $30 to cover the Assignment Book and planning.  Full Registration fee will be due in September for the following school year.

Incentive Programs

There are several incentive programs in the studio which encourage students to meet their practice and technique goals.  These programs include:  Practice and Piano Goals Sticker Chart, Most Improved Hand Position and Technique Awards, and the prizes and trophies earned through the many special evaluative performance opportunities that are held throughout the year.

Cancellation Policy

Any lesson that I have to cancel will be made up or a credit will be given on the next month’s billing.

No payment credit will be provided for students who miss lessons for any reason. Make-up lessons will be offered if time is available for honest cases of illness, dangerous winter weather, or catastrophic emergency.  Remember, tuition is set to pay for 40 lessons which means there are, depending on scheduling up to 12 weeks every year that are “off” – in most cases those are not depleted by breaks or student absences so most “off weeks” are already factored into the schedule. 

SUMMER SCHEDULING – FOR EXTENDED TRAVEL ABSENCES IN THE SUMMER, OR FOR TAKING A “BREAK”, I CANNOT RESERVE UNPAID LESSON TIMES AND CANNOT GUARANTEE OPENINGS WHEN YOU RETURN. IF LESSON TIMES ARE NOT PAID, I WILL HAVE TO FILL THAT TIME WITH A NEW STUDENT FROM THE WAITING LIST. THANK YOU FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING AND OBSERVATION OF THIS POLICY.

Try to choose a lesson time in which you feel confident. Please understand that the tuition you pay reserves an exclusive weekly time in my schedule for your child. Unlike many service professionals, I cannot resell that time nor can I create extra teaching time in which to give lessons.

Recitals

The studio has two recitals per year.  It is very important to prioritize these performance opportunities.  Learning to share their music is one of the factors that drive students to be motivated to progress.  The benefits in self-confidence, poise, maturity, and achievement are enormous.  Inasmuch as I can, the studio requires recital participation.  I feel very strongly–adamantly– that it is a vital component in the program I am working with your child and that their work must be respected and honored. Non-participation in recitals, depending on circumstances, will result in forfeiting your child’s enrollment in the studio.  Students must arrive, punctually, at the designated time, before the recital begins or they will not be allowed to perform.

Recital attire: while not requiring formal dress, recitals are a special occasion where the students are presenting themselves and their work. Dress should be within the context of “nice occasion dress”. No jeans, casual shorts or cut-offs, flip-flops, casual tee-shirts

If the need should arise that you must exit or enter the recital hall while the program is in progress, wait  to open the door until the student performing has completed their playing and you hear applause.

Parents and guests are expected to stay for the entire program.  There are, only, 2 of these programs per year and appropriate plans should be made.  Children notice people coming and going and it can have a detrimental effect on a child’s concentration and performance.  Please give EVERY child the same level of courtesy, and respect that you expect for your child.  Because of the impact on the students, I must remain firm on these policies.  Non-compliance or cooperation with this policy will forfeit your child’s enrollment in this studio.  For any special circumstances, please see me in advance.

Studio Guidelines

Please do not ring the doorbell.  If a lesson is scheduled, I will be expecting you – please come directly in.

If a lesson is in progress upon your arrival, please make as little noise or disruption as possible so as not to disturb the student at the piano.

Students and parents, please wait, quietly, in my family room which is the designated waiting area. Children should not wander through the house or explore cupboards or shelves in the kitchen.

During the time that I am working with your child, please allow my full attention to be on the lesson and my interaction with your child without parental or sibling distraction.

Students – no texting or phone calls during lessons – cell phones and other electronic devices should be OFF in the studio.

No food, gum, or drink is allowed at, or near, the piano.

Please bring books, notebooks, and all additional instructional materials to lesson.

Nails should be trimmed and maintained short enough to allow for the development of optimal hand position.

The front door must be closed – do not stand in the open door or run in and out leaving the door open.