Welcome to the new school year!
This handbook will outline your band program and should become a very important resource. Abiding by the rules outlined in this handbook will allow students to fulfill a commitment to their school, to their fellow band members, to their families, and to themselves.
Only when every member of the band puts forth 100% effort can a band attain its goals in musical achievement and service to school and community. You are embarking on a lifetime of musical enjoyment. The more you invest of yourself, the more you will be rewarded.
Please take special notice of the information concerning attendance at functions, fees, grading policies, rehearsals, daily procedures, uniforms, and important dates. Please sign and return the Parent Volunteer Form/Signature Page at the end of the handbook.
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact the band directors
Head Band Director, Amy Worman
Google Voice Phone number: 210-701-1970
Assistant Band Director, Joseph McLemore
Google Voice Phone number: 210-660-8014
Ed White Eagle Band Objective
To provide all students with an understanding and appreciation of music. This will be obtained with instruction of theory, pedagogy, and listening skills. Students will also be taught self-discipline, teamwork, and performance etiquette. Students will use these skills to have successful performances and to have fun playing their instruments!
The Ed White Eagle Band Program
The Ed White Band is divided into groups based on ability and experience; Honor Band (1st Band), Symphonic Band (2nd Band), and Beginner Band.
Beginning band consists of first time players or students with limited band experience. Classes are divided up into like instruments (exp: flutes are together and trombones are together.) This allows more focus on the pedagogy for their specific instruments. Instruments are assigned based on student choice, student ability, and the needs of the band program.
Honor Band and Symphonic Band
The honor and symphonic bands are advanced groups with students placed according to ability, reliability, citizenship, academic eligibility, and the needs of the band program (Students can be promoted and demoted at any time. ) Students are required to attend performances and rehearsals. Honor Band and Symphonic students will be required to attend sectionals once a week outside of school. Students will also participate in other activities, including; Region Band, UIL Concert/Sight Reading Contest, and Solo & Ensemble Contest.
(Honor Band/1st band – Mrs. Worman Symphonic Band/2nd band – Mr. Mclemore)
All other classes, including advanced band, should not be affected. Students will be expected to attend all rehearsals and performance opportunities.
All beginner band students:
Essential Elements book 1 (Hal Leonard) for their instruments
Beginner Percussion will also use:
A Fresh Approach to the Snare Drum by Mark Wessels
All Symphonic & Honor Band students:
Essential Elements book 2 (Hal Leonard) for their instruments
Band requires teamwork, precision, and discipline. We expect all students to adhere to the rules of the school and the band hall. Classroom violations include but are not limited to the following:
Disruption; tardy; failure to bring materials; chewing gum, food or drink; and not
respecting oneself, other students, or teachers. Violations will result in the following actions and a possible “U” in conduct:
Essay assigned to be copied & parent contact
Timeout / removal from class & parent contact
Counselor referral & parent contact
Administrative contact & parent contact
Please remember, any behavior or discipline violations in band class, any other class or school function, could result in losing the privilege to participate in any or all band activities.
Students are expected to follow school rules and policies, as outlined in the student code of conduct, as well as:
enter the band hall in a quiet, courteous, and orderly manner.
follow all directions by directors and/or teachers the first time asked.
be in assigned seats with materials by the set time.
have the following materials: pencil, folder/binder, music, instrument and mouthpiece.and specific items such as reeds (3) and/or valve oil.
asking for permission to speak by raising their hand.
play only their assigned instruments.
play when instructed.
be dismissed after class and rehearsals by the director.
understand that music stands are for music only; they are not for holding locks, phones, for leaning or writing on.
Understand that there is absolutely NO food, drinks, candy, or gum in the band hall without permission.
If your instrument is in the shop for repairs, bring a note from a guardian and all other materials, such as a mouthpiece and school instrument will be provided if available.
meet playing test requirements:
being respectful and observant of rules when entering, leaving, or waiting in band hall.
always being on time, if not early, to all rehearsals, events, and concerts.
We recommend signing up to receive the weekly newsletter sent out weekly. If you are not receiving it already, send an email Mrs Worman at firstname.lastname@example.org and request to be added to the list. This will generally have info related to things going on with the band for the upcoming week or two.
For our more informal communications, like when we go to on trips and need to communicate quickly, we use the Band App.
Under current Texas State Law, students that are failing one or more classes are still eligible to participate in extracurricular events. For example, a student failing a class would still be allowed to participate in our UIL contest (extra-curricular). Failure to pass your classes may not affect your ability to participate in UIL, but failing to learn and pass off your music at a proficient level, will. FAILURE TO COMPLETE PASS-OFFS CAN AND WILL RESULT IN YOUR REMOVAL FROM CONTEST!
40% daily participation
30% quizzes & playing tests
100% total grade
Playing tests & performances
Playing tests are given over tone quality, rhythmic excerpts, music excerpts, and scales.
Performance grades are given for students’ attendance, behavior*, and dress at concerts (see uniforms.) Band is a team activity and everyone is a valuable asset to the program and is depended on by others. Directors should be notified as soon as possible in case of an absence, so that parts can be re-assigned and adjusted for.
Absences will require a makeup grade consisting of a 500 word report (this is a major grade). Please check the calendar for dates and times. In the rare case of a schedule change, updates will be sent home. If having transportation issues, ask friends for help, or if necessary, talk to a band director.
Excused absences are as follows:
1. Student illness (accompanied by a doctor’s note.)
2. Excused absence recorded by the attendance office.
3. Death in the family or unforeseen circumstance.
All parents, relatives, and friends are welcome and invited to all concerts. Please pick up students promptly after all events.
Concert behavior expectations
Since a successful performance is the ultimate objective of any band, concert behavior must be learned and practiced.
While in the audience, one should remain seated until the end of the performance.
While a group is performing, there should be absolutely no talking or horseplay.
Students have worked hard to prepare for a performance and deserve respect.
At the end of each selection, clap politely. Whistling or yelling is not appropriate.
Cell phones and other electronics should be turned off during a performance.
All band students performing in Ed White M.S. band concerts are required to remain in attendance for the performances of all groups involved. All band students in attendance are expected to help return equipment to the band room and to help clean up the cafeteria/gym when we perform at Ed White Middle School.
Daily participation grade is based on students’ classroom participation and materials.
Reeds (at least 3), cleaning swab (woodwinds)
Valve oil, slide cream, etc. (brass)
Advanced Band - Music binder (provided)
Beginner Band – Beginner book & instrument in working order
Practicing is homework for a band member. This is their opportunity to improve as players by focusing on certain fundamentals, music passages, scales, etudes, solos, and of course extra fun music. (Sectionals for the advanced bands will count as a practice grade. Other band members will receive extra credit when attending appropriate sectionals.) This year we will be using a program called “SmartMusic” to assess playing skills and to encourage practice. The tests they take on SmartMusic will count as the practice grade. We have what are called “practice room subscriptions” where students can practice at school using a computer in the practice room and the app. The app allows them to practice with the computer giving them feedback on how they are doing! It actually shows them if they missed notes or rhythms and lets them practice slower or faster or even just small sections of the music. The software is free and a “student subscription” is only $30 for an entire year. You do not need a subscription for them to practice at school, but if you would like your child to have access at home, I have included the link you need to get started. You need a computer or iPad with internet access and a microphone. http://www.smartmusic.com/
Region 12 sponsors a program to honor the outstanding middle school seventh and eighth grade band students throughout our region. Members of the region bands are selected based on an audition of scales and prepared music. Those students selected for the band will participate in a clinic and concert under the leadership of a well-known conductor. It is an extreme honor to be selected to this elite group. All honor band members are strongly encouraged to participate. There will rehearsals outside of school to help students prepare for this audition. Students will be screened to assure that they meet a set level of proficiency on the required material. Students will sign a commitment form if they are participating.
UIL Concert & Sight Reading Contest
The UIL Concert and Sight Reading Contest is a very important State event. We are competing against a high standard, not other bands, but almost every band in the state competes. At this contest, eligible concert bands will perform three selections from a prescribed list and are also required to sight read a new piece for three judges. Students must be academically eligible for this event and must be able to play their music at a high level. Before attending UIL band contest, each student must play his/her music correctly for one of the two directors. Some of the events will take place during school hours and some will occur in the evening or on the weekend. The directors hope for great support from band students and parents during the contest period.
San Antonio Spurs Game and Performance (honor and symphonic band only)
This will be open to all 7th and 8th graders in Honor Band or Symphonic Band who meet the criteria. They will have the opportunity to play for pre-game, attend the game, and receive a meal. We will have details later in the year about the date, time, and cost of the tickets.
Students must be a 7th or 8th grader in Honor Band or Symphonic Band.
Students must be passing all classes.
Students must attend Pre-UIL Tape Clinic and UIL Concert & Sight-reading Contest. Students must attend all concerts or have written excuse and met optional assignments. Students must have shown excellent behavior throughout the school year.
Students must play off the music we will be playing at the game.
Students must have paid all band fees. (maintenance, reeds, etc.)
Solo and Ensemble Contest
Each year NEISD sponsors middle school solo and ensemble contests. Ed White Middle School will be one of the hosts of solo and ensemble again this year (See calendar for dates). These contests are open to all academically eligible 6th, 7th, and 8th grade band students. Students entering the solo and ensemble contest must pay an entry fee of $5.00 per event (can be reduced by fundraisers.) The directors will help students select music for this contest.
This year we will have two fundraiser opportunities. The first will be a brochure sale in the fall. The second will be our annual Spaghetti Dinner in the spring semester. Please help us in these events. All monies made go directly to the band program.
School Owned Instruments
There is an NEISD instrument fee of $30 for all school owned instruments (This includes percussionists.) This money will be placed in the district instrument repair budget and will be used to help offset repair expenses incurred by normal wear and tear. It is not designed to cover cost from damage (i.e. dents, broken parts etc.) or loss of instrument due to theft/misplacement, etc. This type of repair is the responsibility of the student who is using the instrument.
A registration form must be completed and returned with parent signature. If at all possible, students playing large instruments will be issued one instrument for home use and one for school use. Insurance is strongly recommended (ask for info.) Each instrument issued will be in good playing condition. Students are expected and required to keep the instruments clean and in top condition. Basic supplies must be purchased and repairs be made just like personally owned instruments. Remember, most school-owned instruments exceed a value of $3000.
Band lockers & locks are provided to all band students so that they may have a secure place to keep their instrument, music, and accessories (mouthpieces, reeds, etc…). When the instrument is in the locker, the lock should be locked on the locker with the door handle in the locked position. When the instrument is out of the locker during class, the student may either lock the lock back on the locker or take the lock to his or her seat. The lock is NOT to be hung on the music stand as it may fall off and cause damage to the lock. The lock is also not to be left inside the locker. If the lock is lost or broken, replacement cost is $6.
The locker should be kept neat and clean. No food or drink may be kept in the locker. School backpacks may be kept in the locker with the understanding that it should only be accessed before and after school and for band class.Students should not share lockers or combinations. Students should not touch anything in the locker room that is not assigned to them. Students should never climb on or in the lockers. Locker doors should remain closed to avoid injury. Students should never congregate or loiter (hang out) in the locker room. Instruments should be put away IN the case and put in the locker every time it is used. The cases are designed to protect the instrument. Not using the case can cause damage requiring costly repairs.
Do not bring your own lock.
Beginner Band Uniform (And informal Advanced Band Uniform):
Band T-Shirt (purchased through the band)
Khaki Pants/shorts preferred (school dress code appropriate jeans/shorts are also acceptable)
School uniform approved shoes (Purchased by student)
Symphonic and Honor Band:
Uniforms will be assigned to Symphonic and Honor Band. Each student must have the following items:
Band T-Shirt (purchased through the band for informal performances) $5
Plain White T-Shirt (for wearing under dress shirt)
Long Black Dress Socks
Black Dress Shoes (Girls may wear flats)
Black Dress Pants *** you will be notified if needed***
Girls will have the option of wearing a full length black dress provided by the school as the uniform. They will need to make sure they have undergarments that will not show on top and will need to have athletic shorts or possibly yoga pants to wear on the bottom. Full length pants under the dress is unacceptable.
Uniform check out:
Each student will present themselves to the uniform volunteer wearing the following items to receive their uniform :
White T-Shirt (only if wearing tux shirt)
Long Black Socks (if wearing tux pants)
Black Dress Shoes
*All hair accessories should be black
**The Band Director will notify students which uniform is to be worn.
Sectionals (After school small group practice)
Sectionals are required for all advanced band students (Honor Band and Symphonic band/ 7th and 8th grades.) These are scheduled after school rehearsals where the students are required to attend once a week. We work with the coaches so athletes are able to attend without being penalized. We will work with you and your child to help if transportation is an issue.
Students at all levels are encouraged to take private lessons in order to improve their individual playing skills. There is nothing like having one on one instruction from a professional instrumentalist. We are fortunate in NEISD to be a part of the private lesson program. Students may sign up for private lessons during their band class or outside the school day, whichever is more convenient for that student. Teachers are interviewed and approved at the district level and the parents pay the teachers directly. Master classes or group lessons will be provided by the Ed White Band during the student’s band period or outside of the school day.
Practice Guidelines for Students and Parents
Students' progress in band depends a great deal on what is achieved during daily home practice sessions. Students must reinforce what is learned in class through daily practice. Every day a student doesn't practice, he/she loses days of progress. Even if a student thinks that he or she "doesn't have time" to practice, at least a few minutes should be spent running through what was covered in class. A little practice is better than no practice at all and will prevent the student from falling behind in class. Students are welcome to practice before or after school in the band practice rooms. The more a student invests of him/herself, the more success and satisfaction he/she will have in band!
Practice in a quiet place
with good lighting
in a straight backed chair
away from distractions
Practice with a metronome & tuner (there are free apps)
Use a music stand
Have attainable goals for each practice session
Practice sessions should follow this routine
Warm up (long tones, Remington, scales)
Fundamental exercises (lip slurs, rhythmic patterns)
Difficult music segments (slowly and in small chunks)
End with something you can play well or enjoy playing
Students should have a high quality of practice and focus towards what they are doing. The better you are prepared and the more you practice, the more enjoyable your music experience will be.
Promotions and demotions between bands
Occasionally throughout the school year, there are times when movement between groups is necessary. For example: if music selected for honor band UIL requires a certain number of players on a particular part and we end up short a player, due to any number of circumstances, it may be necessary to draw upon the symphonic band. In these instances, we take into consideration the technical ability and musicianship of the student in question for promotion, their citizenship, and the grades of all their classes. We will make all necessary communications and relay information if this happens to occur. To the contrary, it is occasionally necessary to demote students as well. This occurs if a student is not meeting requirements of their current group, is consistently not following instructions or rules (not limited to band), and not taking any action to remedy the situation. The grounds for demotion are not limited to just the preceding list and is open to director discretion. Again, we will make contact and provide any necessary information regarding any changes.
In regards to the following:
Controlled substance use/possession; Tobacco use/possession; Alcohol use/possession;Stealing; Hazing or Bullying.
Any middle school band student caught in violation of the above will be dealt with in accordance to NEISD policy. Furthermore, band class placement and or participation in extracurricular activities may be subject to review, at the discretion of the band director.
North East ISD Extracurricular Participants Expectations and Rules:
North East ISD provides extracurricular activities (EA) for the benefit of the students. Participation in
these activities is believed to provide students an opportunity to learn responsibility, dedication, leadership, hard work, respect for rules and authority. Participation in public school EA is a privilege. Some of the expectations for the participants exceed those of the general student body. Participants are expected to follow the rules including, but not limited to the Student Code of Conduct and to maintain a favorable attitude and proper conduct at all times and all locations. Violations of the rules will result in corrective and/or disciplinary action. The facts and circumstances will be considered when determining consequences. Students may be suspended or removed from participation in the extracurricular activity for violation of the above mentioned expectations.
The following are the types of inappropriate behavior and the disciplinary action to be taken with any participant involved in any rule infraction. Category I-IV refers to the category of offenses listed in the Student/Parent Handbook in the Student Code of Conduct section.
1. Category I offenses, except: club, illegal knife and illegal weapons, student removal from participation in EA for one calendar year from the date of the expulsion or other action taken by the District. Offenses of a club, illegal knife and illegal weapons, student removal from participation in EA for the period of the expulsion or other action taken by the District
2. Category II offense, student removal from participation in EA for the duration of the expulsion or the length of removal to the DAEP.
3. Category III offense, student removal from participation in EA for the duration of the removal to the AMS/AHS or if the assignment is to SRC the removal would follow the schedule below:
a. First assignment to SRC (any length), student removal from participation in EA for 30 calendar days including all holidays and weekend days. During removal the student will continue their involvement with the team/organization with the exception of participating in the competitions.
b. Second assignment to SRC (any length) or assignment to AMS/AHS after SRC assignment, student removal from participation in EA for one calendar year from date of the second assignment to DAEP.
4. Category IV offense which resulted in the student being assigned to SRC or AMS/AHS would follow the removal from EA as indicated in 3 a and b.
5. Category IV offenses which resulted in out of school suspension, student will be removed from all participation in the EA for the duration of the disciplinary action being taken including weekend days and holidays.
6. Category IV offenses, MIDDLE SCHOOL student which resulted in ISS will be permitted to participate in practice during the ISS assignment, but would not be permitted to participate in any competition. HIGH SCHOOL students which resulted in ISS will be permitted to participate in practice and competitions during the ISS assignment.
7. Students may participate in tryouts for the following year’s team if the tryouts occur during a student’s removal.
8. When the District is informed by a law enforcement agency of a student’s involvement in a criminal activity while separate and apart from the school and school activities, the student will be removed from the EA for one calendar year if the criminal act is a felony. All other types of violations of the law will result in a 30 day removal from participation provided the District is informed by a law enforcement agency.
9. Coaches and Directors (band, choir, orchestra, dance, cheer, and pep-squad) retain the authority to determine membership on a team, unless the selection process is determined solely by an outside panel of judges.
10. Other misbehavior, not specified above, may result in disciplinary consequences which may include but not be limited to a written warning, probation for a set period of time, or other disciplinary measures that do not remove the student from the organization or prohibit their participation.
11. All appeals will use the procedures outlined in Board Policy FNG (LOCAL).