I hope you are all ready to take on another exciting and challenging year as members of the Hart County High School Band. As your director, I am very eager to work with each and every one of our band students during the upcoming year. The high standards that are set for this group can only be achieved through the hard work of all students, parents, administrators, and the directors. The goal is for each and everyone involved to “be the best” they can be at all times. This must come from a commitment to the music and to the group. The purpose of this handbook is to give you the information you will need to provide you with rehearsal and performance information, as well as policies regarding the band program. An understanding of this information will help to guide each person through his or her time with the band.
One comment that is regularly made about band students is how courteous and well disciplined they are. It is obvious to people that band is more than a place for students to learn about music and performance; it is also an organization that teaches teamwork, self-discipline, responsibility, and many other qualities that are important to be successful in life. One of the more difficult things about being a leader is finding the balance between what’s best for the organization and each individual, and making a decision when there is a difference. The only way we can be successful in this regard is for every member of the program to make a commitment to be on time and present at all rehearsals and performances.
On the following pages, there are lists of expectations, policies, and requirements that apply to all members of the Hart County Band. It is important to understand that being a part of the band means making a commitment. The reason for commitment is that each individual’s actions affect the entire group. When a student misses a rehearsal the other students have to work much harder to compensate for his or her absence. It slows the learning process and is in direct conflict with the concept of teamwork. Putting responsibility to the band before personal preference is sometimes a sacrifice, but a lesson in work ethics that must be learned for adult life.
Remember that being a part of the band means being a part of special group. You are going to make many friends, create lasting memories, and take part in many wonderful experiences. You are going to work with people to achieve the common goal of greatness and you are going to do it with the great art of music.
Musically Yours, Alan D. Tolbert Student Expectations
1. You are expected to be at all rehearsals and performances. 2. You are expected to prepare for rehearsals and performances on time (on time means being early and ready). 3. You are expected to correctly perform all performance materials. 4. You are expected to be responsible for all equipment and materials needed for rehearsals and performances. (Instrument, music, tuner, metronome, pencil, reeds, valve oil, sticks, etc.) 5. You are expected to refrain from casual conversations during rehearsals and performances. 6. You are expected to have an alert rehearsal behavior - listen, count, play on time, and do your very best. 7. You are expected to display a good attitude through cooperation, discipline and intensity of achievement. 8. You are expected to follow the behavior guide at all times. 9. You are expected to complete all homework/practice assignments on time.
Band Classes and Organizations
Program Structure The band program at Hart County can be roughly divided into three interactive parts: the Concert Bands, the Marching Band, and Small Ensembles (including Jazz Band). Through participation in as many of these areas of the program as possible, students may fully achieve the goals and objectives detailed above.
Additional Musical Opportunities District Honor BandAll-State BandSolo and Ensemble FestivalUGA January High School Music Festival (Jan Fest)Piedmont College Honor Band Instruments and Accessories
Students and parents are reminded that a craftsman is only as good as his tools. Musicians must have quality instruments that play well in order for them to perform to the best of their abilities. Unfortunately, many beginners start out on "beginner" instruments that do not play as well as "intermediate" or "professional" type instruments. High School musicians should consider stepping up to one of these type instruments. If that is not possible, please make sure that the instrument that you have is of excellent working order. Please talk to one of the directors before purchasing a new instrument.
School Owned Instruments and Materials Certain equipment and materials, such as music, music stands, and chairs are available, free of charge, for student use. The larger instruments such as Tuba, Euphonium, Bass Clarinets, French Horns and the Percussion Instruments are usually owned by the band and students are allowed to use them. All students are reminded that they have a responsibility to take care of school owned equipment and instruments. Unnecessary damage or loss of these instruments or materials is the responsibility of, and must be paid for, by the student or students who are using them. If multiple students are using an instrument, the cost of the repair or replacement will come from all students unless one of the students is caught damaging the instrument or is honest about what they did.
Behavior Guide Band members who do not adhere to the band’s or the school’s behavior guide may be suspended from band and/or school for misconduct on buses, at rehearsals, during performances and at anytime during a band trip or function. For any organization, particularly a large organization, to run smoothly and efficiently, the overall discipline must be both strict and fair. The organization must come first! To ensure fair treatment and the director's respect for the students, the following policy will apply to all members within the band. Band and its activities whether at home or on a trip is an extension of school; therefore, ALL SCHOOL RULES APPLY 24 HOURS A DAY. The Directors and their assignees may search instrument cases, luggage or motel rooms. See the Student Handbook and the Hart County Code of Discipline for more information and details.
1. All school policies of conduct and behavior apply to all band functions. The penalties resulting from the abuse of the regulations will be consistent with school board policies. 2. Tobacco, alcohol, and nonprescription drugs are clearly prohibited under school and state law. Penalties include immediate suspension and possible expulsion from band and school. 3. Food and drink are not allowed in the band facilities at any time. There will be no gum allowed at band functions. The band room will be kept clean and free from trash at all times. This is our home away from home and we must work to keep it clean. Keep trash, litter and drink containers cleaned up at all times. Use the trashcans! 4. Cell phones are permitted, but must be put away unless otherwise told by the director. Students will have opportunities to use their phones or other devices in the classroom or on trips for various activities as the year progresses. However, if the student is caught abusing the privilege of using any devise then the school’s policy for classroom use will be enforced. 5. The use of obscene language or gestures will be considered unbecoming of a Hart County High School Band member. Public displays of affection will not be allowed in the band room or at any band functions. This is not an image we wish to project and the problems will be addressed immediately. 6. General disrespect to the director, other members of the faculty, chaperones, band staff, or substitutes will not be tolerated. 7. Band members should honor the position and leadership of all band officers. The officers have earned their positions through experience, training and testing. Unfair or unauthorized treatment should be brought to the director. 8. Only students who are in the band are allowed in the band room. Please do not bring your friends into the band room to visit. Students wishing to be in the band room during free time must have the approval of the director. The strict rules of who may come in the band room are to protect school and individual property. 9. All students must have the necessary materials to perform correctly. Each member is required to keep up with all assigned music and materials. It is your responsibility to make sure that the music is not lost or damaged. 10. Students are not allowed to handle an instrument other than their own or the instrument assigned to them. Many instruments are delicate and can be damaged easily. If it not yours, don’t touch it! Do not borrow any instrument that does not belong or is assigned to you. Percussion instruments and area are off limits to all non-percussion members. 11. Please take your instrument and accessories home every day after school (PRACTICE!). HCHS and the HCHS Band cannot be responsible for personal instruments left in the storage cabinets, especially after school hours. 12. The band facilities are to be cleaned and straightened after every rehearsal and performance. It is the responsibility of each band member for seeing that the band room is kept neat and orderly. 13. The telephone in band room is to be used for school or band business only. There will be no unauthorized use of the phone. 14. The director’s door is always open and students are welcome to come into the office to discuss music, instruments, class, etc. However, the director’s office is not a student lounge and there will be no students in the office unless the director is present. Students should always knock and wait until given permission to enter. 15. Only authorized personnel are allowed in the band offices, music library and uniform room. 16. Because of the large number of visitors and guests, the general appearance of the band room, the instrument storage areas, practice rooms, library, and uniform storage area must be kept neat at all times. Instruments should be stored neatly in the storage shelves or other designated areas. Books and personal belongings are not to be left in any of these areas because of the disorganized look. The band office is not to be used as a storage facility. Items left in the band facility may be discarded immediately. Keep up with your belongings. 17. Overall, students in the band program are expected to be ladies and gentlemen at all times 18. Students may enter the band room at the following times: in the morning before first period during your scheduled class time, before and after rehearsals and performances. 19. Band room computers may only be used when given permission by a director.
Attendance Policies Attendance Policy 1. Attendance is mandatory at all rehearsals and performances. 2. Excused absences are: (Only directors may determine whether an absence is excused.) a) Illness (note required immediately upon arrival back to school or rehearsals) b) Excused Absence from school (If the absence is unexcused from school, then it is unexcused from rehearsal – director must still be notified before rehearsal starts that it is excused) c) Death in family (note required-prior to absence when possible) d) An important religious observance (note required-at least 2 weeks before the absence) e) Potentially some other circumstances - Approved in advance - The director will determine each circumstance on a case-by-case basis. 3. Personal conflicts such as jobs, homework, tutoring, parties, etc. are not excused. Do not ask!!
THERE IS A ZERO ABSENCE POLICY FOR MARCHING BAND EXCEPT FOR EMERGENCIES.
Marching Rehearsal Week Attendance* 1 Excused Absence – Member may have to sit out halftime performance. 2 Excused /or Excused Thursday rehearsal - Member will sit out halftime performance. Changes can be made daily during a rehearsal week. This guideline is in place in order to insure the safety of the member and the other members of the marching band. The member will be required to participate in all other activities of the marching band at games and other required performances.
1 Unexcused Absence from rehearsal - Member loses 3rd Quarter break and sits out halftime performance on 25 Yard Line. 2 Unexcused Absences from rehearsal – same as 1 unexcused absence and member will go up for expulsion Unexcused tardiness to rehearsal will result in actions taking place at rehearsal. Being tardy to rehearsals more than once could result in a member not being able to perform half time or other performances. Parents please understand that your child is late even if it is because you were running late. A missed performance due to an Unexcused Absence or excessive tardiness to rehearsal will result in probable dismissal from Band! There are no refunds for anything upon dismissal.
*Upon returning after an absence(s), excused or unexcused, a member must provide written documentation signed by parent or Doctor including a contact phone number explaining the reason for the absence. Students not participating in a performance due to illness, excessive absences, etc. must still attend "in uniform" unless excused by the director.
Being On Time Early is On Time On Time is Late If you are late, you are Left
Parent Pick-up Parents, please remember to pick up your child within a reasonable time after a rehearsal or performance.
Respect For The Podium This is a courtesy among musicians. Whoever is on the podium - Director, Band Officer or Band Parent - must be given the undivided attention of everyone in the room.
Band uniforms are issued each year by designated personnel. The Band Uniform should be worn at such times and places as designated by the director. It must be worn properly and with the respect that it commands. It is important that students bring black socks, marching shoes, gloves, shorts, and the current years band t-shirt to wear under the uniform every game day. Remember the uniform represents you and HCHS! The uniform coat, pants, shako and plume are provided to the student. The students will be required to have the uniforms cleaned as throughout the year and present a cleaning receipt at inspection. In the event that the uniform or any accessory is damaged or lost, the student will be required to pay for the replacement of that item. Flag Corps and Majorette members will be required to purchase uniform items as prescribed by the directors in accordance to the particular show theme and needs.
Inspection Inspection is conducted before each public performance. Infractions could result in the student not being allowed to perform. Infractions will result in students not receiving full credit for the performance and may lose their third quarter break and lettering opportunity. The following items will be checked: Marching Band Inspection Procedures: 1. Promptness (don't be late!). 2. Neatness and cleanliness of the uniform. 3. Identification numbers for uniforms must be memorized. 4. GLOVES- black, cotton, machine washable, purchased through Bailes-Cobb 5. SHOES- "409" is good to clean your shoes. An old toothbrush is good to scrub around the bottom of the sides. 6. JACKET AND PANTS- these items must be dry-cleaned periodically. 7. T-SHIRTS- a Current Hart County band t-shirt must be worn under your uniform. 8. MUSIC- All music must be placed in a flip folder and numbered per instructions. 9. INSTRUMENT- you must show your instrument along with extra reeds, valve oil, etc. 10. HAIR- all long hair must managed appropriately. Girl's hair should be French-braided and boy's hair put in a ponytail holder. Hair holders should match hair color and should not be excessively large. Hair should not be a color which is not a natural hair color. Pink, Blue, Red, Green and other bright colors should be avoided. 11. JEWELRY and MAKEUP- NO jewelry can be worn with your uniform except stud earrings (Gold or diamond). No fingernail polish can be worn and only lightly applied make-up is allowed. 12. SOCKS- Black socks will be worn with the uniform at all times. The length should at least cover the halfway to the knee. 13. BLUE JEANS SHOULD NEVER BE WORN UNDER THE UNIFORM
***PLEASE BE PREPARED TO SHOW THESE ITEMS ALL AT ONCE!!
Not having the proper uniform will result in suspension from the performance with further action to be taken at a later time. Uniform must be worn correctly at all times unless otherwise noted by a director. When jackets are allowed off they must be folded neatly and placed in/on the shako (marching hat), or in a clean area if the member does not have a shako. Anytime jackets are on they must be zipped up and latched at the top. Anytime bibbers are on they must be on the shoulders and zipped up. Shoes should be clean and shiny at all times. Under shirt should be the current band shirt and should be clean.
Alternate Uniform for Games, Weather, and Pep Rallies Current Band Shirt, Blue Jeans or khaki shorts, and Tennis Shoes (jackets, sweatshirts, etc. during cold weather.) This should be brought to every game just in case of bad weather. Flag Corps and Majorettes will wear what is designated by the sponsor.
Stadium Responsibilities 1. Report on time as indicated on the most current Band schedule. 2. Band members must sit in assigned areas by sections. 3. Uniforms must be worn properly and completely at all times unless instructed otherwise by the directors. 4. The third quarter break is a privilege not a right. It may be taken away by the director at any time. 5. Drinks and food are allowed only during third quarter break and never in the “band block”. 6. Band members must be in their spot and ready to play with one minute left of third quarter. 7. No individual or sectional playing unless approved by the director.
MERIT SYSTEM This system is designed for the rewarding of meritorious conduct, achievement, dedication to the high goals and standards set for the Hart County Band and Auxiliary Units.
To enter Merits the student or parent should go into the Practice Log section of charms. Students should put reason for merits under “Music Practiced” and the number of merits under “Minutes”.
To receive merits the student must submit the accomplishment on the merit form to the director no later than one week after the accomplishment of the activity is completed. The merits will accumulate for the following time frame: June 1 until May 1 of each school cycle. The following is a partial list of meritorious conduct and actions to be awarded with merits. Parents may help earn their child merits. Students will be awarded merit medals for their accomplishments throughout the year. Since this is an award to show student achievements, parent help can be no more than 50 points for the year
MARCHING BAND 45 ALL-STATE MEMBER 30 JAZZ BAND MEMBER 25 ALL-STATE FINALS 15 ALL-STATE/DISTRICT AUDITIONS 10 SUPERIOR PERFORMANCE 10 SOLO/ENSEMBLE PARTICIPATION 10 DISTRICT HONOR BAND 10 COMMUNITY SERVICE 5 BAND OFFICER 5 PARENTS AT BAND BOOSTERS MEETING 3 PARENTS WORKING CONCESSIONS OR FUNDRAISERS 3 APPROVED MUSICAL EVENTS 3 PRIVATE LESSONS (PER LESSON) 1 MISCELLANEOUS 1-5
Parent merit points are given for each event and not per parent. All miscellaneous must be band or music related. Director has final decision with the amount of merits given for requests not listed above. Merits received by students in the total band program will receive recognition and awards. Students attaining at least 100 merits will receive the Band Merit Certificate and Students attaining at least 150 merits will receive the Band Merit Medal.
LEVEL I 5 demerits: Student is “Benched from the next performance but must attend all practices and participate fully in all aspects. If student is not allowed to march, they also lose third quarter break.
LEVEL II 10 demerits: Suspension from the marching/symphonic/concert band at which time a conference is scheduled with parents, student and band director to decide the students future in band.
The following is a partial list of unacceptable conduct resulting in demerits:
5 UP -Unexcused absence from a performance (NO PRIOR NOTIFICATION SUBMITTED) 5 UR -Unexcused absence from a rehearsal (NO PRIOR NOTIFICATION SUBMITTED) 3 UPN -Unexcused absence from a performance (WITH PRIOR NOTIFICATION SUBMITTED) 3 URN -Unexcused absence from a rehearsal (WITH PRIOR NOTIFICATION SUBMITTED) 1 NI -No instrument for class or rehearsal 1 IC -Improper care of uniform, instrument, music, school equipment,stands,etc. 1 TP -Tardy for performance 1 TR -Tardy for rehearsal 1 N -Playing instrument (not issued) when prohibited 1 G -Chewing gum, eating candy, and drinking beverages in band room. 1 D -Talking in rehearsal 1 I -Incomplete uniform 1 M -Miscellaneous
For 2-4 demerits, students will receive Band Detention. Written/work assignments will be administered. If a student commits the same offense more than twice they will become an alternate.
Awards Successful participation in the band offers several outstanding awards. Most of these are presented each year at the annual Band Banquet. The directors will make the final determination of who will receive these awards. This banquet is open to all band members, their parents, school and community officials and other people interested in the HCHS Band.
HCHS Band Letter It is an honor to letter in band, just as in other organizations at HCHS. In order to receive a Band Letter, a member must have completed 2 complete band seasons, be at least an upcoming junior and in good standing in the marching and concert or symphonic band for that year (high school). The member must be enrolled in a band class. The member must receive a grade no lower than a "C" for all semesters, as well as be in good financial standing with the Band Booster Club. Students letter one time. Flag Corps and Majorette members must meet all of the above standards with the exception of enrollment in band class. A student may not order a letter jacket through the band unless they have already lettered. The Hart County Band Boosters purchase half of students Letter Jacket with the assumption that the student will continue to march with the band. If a student leaves the band program, they must reimburse the boosters for their half of the jacket. Letters are given during the Marching season usually in October. Students are fitted for a Jacket at the beginning of the school year. If a student does not attend band camp the band assumes that they are no longer participating in the band program and therefore is no longer eligible for a band Letter Jacket.
New Parent Guide to Band Activities
We look forward to having the rising 9th graders join the Hart County High School Band Program. The Hart County High School Band Program has a great deal to offer our students. We will strive for excellence in every band activity. We consider a student’s membership in the Hart County Band a privilege. We ask that all students willingly and positively accept the challenge of demanding rehearsals and the multitude of rewards. We also ask that students respect the hard work and dedication of the band and the directors by being punctual, responsible, and mature.
Commitment to Marching Band We want everyone in the Hart County Band Program to participate in the marching band unless they are a member of the HCHS football, cheerleader, volleyball, cross country, softball, or any other fall school related-sport activity. However, these students can participate fully in the concert portions of our program. We will talk to those students that play an instrument that we do not use in the marching band (oboe, bassoon, etc.) on an individual basis.
Marching Band Practice Schedule Regular Rehearsal Schedule during the Fall Football Season is as follows: (subject to change due to facility conflicts) Monday (August Only ) & Tuesday 3:30pm-5:30pm, Full Band Wednesday 3:30pm-5:00pm, Flag Corps and Majorettes Thursday 5:00pm-8:00pm, Full Band
Band Camp fees, Auxiliary expenses, and fundraising are 3 individual ways that band activities and equipment are paid for. In addition, the band boosters host the Lake Hartwell Marching Competition, operate the Visitors Concession stand at home games, Sell Band Fruit, Sell Band Chicken, and a few other fundraisers throughout the year. By having high volunteer rates and high fundraising participation, we can keep from “charging” individual students high amounts of money to participate in band.
Other fees for various items such as band trips are announced at appropriate times. Fees must be paid by the due dates, or the student must be on a payment plan. Payments can be sent to the band room and put in the payment box located beside the band office door. Please note that a payment plan means that the student makes regular payments, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly as determined by the band booster treasurer and the parents. A student can also earn money for fees and other financial needs by selling items during the various fundraising activities, which are held during the year. The HCHS Band Boosters are a non-profit organization and Includes ALL BAND PARENTS. They are only covering expenses for the band. The more funds available for instruction, materials, and equipment, the better we will become.
FAIR SHARE: All students are required to participate in a “fair share” amount each year with fundraisers. There are Three Options for Fair Share. All Members in Marching Band Should Fundraise $100 toward Fair Share. Band Students that are not in Marching Band Should Raise $50 toward Fair Share. If a family does not wish to Fundraise, They can pay a one time $150. If a student falls short of the Fair Share Goal, they will be billed the difference after the last fundraiser in the spring. Our goal is to have expenses paid through the support of the community with fundraisers. If anyone needs to set up a payment plan, please contact us as soon as possible so we can get it started right away.
FUNDRAISERS All students are asked to fundraise because all students benefit from funds raised. Each student will be required to meet their Fair Share amount by participating in each Fundraiser. The Three big Fundraisers of the year are: Fall Chicken Sale: Each Student receives half of the PROFIT in their band account and half toward fair share. This is the fastest way to get money into the students’ individual account. Fruit Sale: The first $100 of profit goes toward the band and Fair Share. After that students get half of the PROFIT per box sold. This is the fastest way to meet Fair Share. Spring Chicken Sale: Each Student receives half of the PROFIT in their band account and half toward fair share. This is the fastest way to get money into the students’ individual account.
STUDENT BAND ACCOUNTS During the course of the year members and parents raise money through the band boosters. PLEASE UNDERSTAND THAT ALL MONEY RAISED THROUGH THE BAND BELONGS TO THE HCHS BAND BOOSTERS. THIS MONEY CANNOT BE USED TO PAY FOR ITEMS CONSIDERED FUNDRAISERS. The band boosters have set up a student account system for the students to have the opportunity to offset their band costs from funds raised through fundraisers for such things as trips, musical items, band fees, etc. This money is to be used only for band related purposes and at no time will the money be handed over to the student or the parents. Any and all moneys not used by the time the member graduates will be rolled into the general band booster account, unless the member has a sibling that is in the band program and is eligible for a band account in a time frame set by the band boosters.
HCHS Band Boosters The HCHS Band Boosters Association provides funding for the band program for such items as awards, festival entry fees and guest clinicians fees. All interested adults are eligible for membership. Parents of every band member are needed to help with the many fund raising projects, which are held throughout the year. There are many committees and projects from which to choose. The Band Boosters welcome your support in any form. Participation in the Band Boosters offers easy access to current information about the band and its activities. It offers opportunities to assist the band and your individual child with financial obligations. It also provides a great social organization with some other very interesting, hardworking, and fun loving people in which you share a great interest. All students and parents are expected to be involved in activities, meetings, and fundraisers that are done by the Band Boosters.
Contact Us We want all parents to fully understand our guidelines and procedures involving the band program. We have made every effort to include pertinent and detailed information in this handbook. If for some reason you have a question or concern, please contact us. Following are avenues of contact that you may pursue: