Updated: Aug 22
Dear 6th Grade Parents: Congratulations on your child becoming a member of the Lake Shore Public School District Instrumental Music Program! This letter is intended to provide information for your child’s decision to join 6th grade band – a decision that will enhance your child’s overall education, and quite possibly change their life!
Towards the end of last year, your child was fitted for a band instrument. Now that we are gearing up for an amazing school year and the first year for our 6th Graders at Kennedy Middle School, it's time to talk about the several options you have when you select an instrument:
1. Rent from A&G Music (most popular option). They offer a rent-to-own program. Your child will receive an instrument in great condition. There is no contract. All repairs will be covered!
2. Purchase a new instrument. Be careful, as there are many "off brand" instruments out there! These are of poor quality. Both A&G and Ardis Music will not repair these instruments. Contact Mr. Arnold before purchasing a new instrument so that we can confirm or deny if it is a good brand/quality! I love when my email is filled with instrument brand questions, it's so much better than getting to our first day of playing and seeing instruments that won't work or last for a kid's time in band.
3. Purchase a used instrument. You can often find some great instruments on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. Like with purchasing a new instrument, please contact Mr. Arnold first, as unfortunately there are many poor brands out there. However, you can find some great deals on quality band instruments! I've made a resource of brands to look for on our band website, here. Please get all used instruments services by a music repair store before bringing them to class, as even if an instrument looks shiny and new, it could be inoperable internally.
When do you first need your instrument? The second week of school, starting September 12th. We go through so much the first week to get us ready to have instruments in our hands, even if you've already purchased an instrument, don't worry about bringing it quite yet, I would even go so far as to say don't take it out of its case, because even if this is done improperly, things can get broken and damaged. A&G rentals will be sent to the school when we are ready to begin with instruments - you will not get them at rental night.
To talk more about these options, give you a chance to meet Mr. Arnold and rent from A&G Central Music, and celebrate you taking the first step on this amazing journey in band, you are invited and highly encouraged to attend our
Beginning Band Blast Off at Lake Shore High School!
Things to know and bring with you to the Beginning Band Blast Off:
The schedule for the evening will approximately be a 6:00pm meeting and presentation with myself and A&G Central Music, and then from 6:20pm-7:30pm our families will have a chance to sit down with A&G regarding rentals and required equipment.
If you are a parent with an elementary student looking to attend this event and the Back-To-School nights across the district, that is definitely possible, but you may miss the informational meeting at 6pm if you're arriving later in our timeblock.
A&G Central Music will have paperwork on site for you to fill out for the rental, if you are opting to rent your instrument. Along with the paperwork, they will be asking for the first payment on the instrument, which can be fulfilled by card, cash, or check. They will also require to see a parent/guardian's driver's license or another form of ID.
For more info on Rental Prices, please view A&G's flier:
For your convenience, A&G also has an online rental platform you can fill out before rental night to save time: https://www.schoolmusiconline.com/rent-online
FAQs on rentals are:
What if my kid decides to not continue in band? Am I on the hook for the payment forever? Absolutely not! A rental program can be started and stopped at anytime.
What if my kid decides to switch to another instrument? Does the balance I've already paid carry over to the other instrument? Yes it does!
Whether you're renting or not, A&G will be selling a few essential items for everyone, including:
Beginning Band Book, Measures of Success Book 1, which is priced at:
$10 all instruments except percussion
$17 percussion book
If you are buying your book outside of rental night, please make sure that you are purchasing "Book 1" and the book for your instrument on the cover. A trumpet book will not work for a flute player, and so on. It looks like this (but says the right instrument name in the upper right corner):
Wire music stand, which is priced at $25 (any wire stand will do, so if you already have one from another family member that was in band, no need to purchase a new one.
Now, I know that there are a lot of financial pieces involved in a successful start up in band - please know that our students will get an excess of opportunities to fundraise throughout the year for all of their future expenses in band. At the end of the day, we don't want finances to be an inhibitor for students to participate band, and there are avenues with A&G Central Music & Lake Shore Public Schools to assist/accommodate families in financial need.
Please contact Mr. Arnold if you have questions on this, and please include if your child is enrolled in the free & reduced lunch program, as that helps our conversations with the district as well.
Welcome to the Kennedy Middle School Band Program! The KMS Band has a long tradition of excellence! I am thrilled you are joining our program for the upcoming school year. I believe band should be amazing and fun! Please take some time to read the information on this band website, www.lakeshorebands.org
I bet you have 1,062 questions, and I can't wait to meet you and get a chance to answer them! In the meantime, I invite you to peruse some FAQ I've built up over the years:
If one of those questions is "What instrument did my child select/was fitted for, again?" Don't worry, we'll tell you this at Registration for our Beginning Band Blast-Off :)
If another one of those questions is "If I already have an instrument, should I still come to the Blast-Off?" The answer is YES! We'll be talking over some other important band information as well.
I can't wait to have your child in band this fall!!
I hope they have a wonderful experience making great music.