Piano Teacher Policies
Most piano teachers use a “studio policy” to communicate the specifics about the logistics of piano lessons. This is, in effect, a legally binding contract between the piano teacher and the piano student (or parents). Below you will find some items that might be found in a piano teacher’s studio policies.
FEES – the manner in which you must pay for your piano lessons should be clearly communicated.
TUITION: Piano teachers require their students to pay for their piano lessons in many different ways such as: once a month, once a quarter, or at each piano lesson. Some piano teachers charge an “hourly rate” while others charge a “monthly rate” (in which you pay the same amount each month for your piano lessons even if there are Holidays in that month).
REGISTRATION FEES: New piano students may be required to pay a one-time (or annually reoccurring) registration fee.
LATE PAYMENT FEES: The deadline for payment of fees should be clearly explained. If you fail to meet that deadline, there may be a penalty for late payment.
BOUNCED CHECK FEES: If you write a check to your piano teacher for your piano lessons, and if that check gets returned to your piano teacher due to insufficient funds, you may be required to reimburse your piano teacher for more than a simple late payment fee.
MATERIALS: Some piano teachers will provide their piano students with all of their piano music for a fee. Other piano teachers will ask that you pay for each item as needed.
FESTIVALS, COMPETITIONS, AND OTHER EVENTS. If your piano teacher has you participate in other activities in addition to your private piano lessons, there may be an extra fee for that (which may or may not be paid directly to your piano teacher).
PIANO LESSONS CALENDAR
The times when your piano lessons are to be held should be clearly communicated.
PIANO LESSONS EVERY WEEK. Most piano teachers require their piano students to enroll in piano lessons on a continuing basis from week to week.
SUMMER PIANO LESSONS. Many piano teachers do teach during this summer months. This is usually due to two main reasons. First long breaks from piano lessons can really set back progress. Second, their piano teaching is most likely their main source of income, and they probably need that income to continue in the summer. If you decide to not take piano lessons in the summer, some piano teachers will require you to drop out of their piano studio and re-enroll in the fall.
HOLIDAYS AND VACATION. Most piano teachers will include which days are considered “Holidays” and Vacation days. You may or may not pay a different amount when your piano lessons happen to fall on one of these days.
MISSED PIANO LESSONS
If you miss a piano lesson for some reason, the studio policy will often communicate the consequences of your absence. Some piano teachers are generous about offering makeup piano lessons as long as you contact them before the scheduled piano lesson (often at least 24 hours in advance), but other piano teachers will not offer private makeup piano lessons. This too is understandable since your piano teacher has reserved a spot in their schedule for you, and if you choose to not attend that meeting for any reason, that time is still reserved even if you are not at your piano lesson.
RESCHEDULING PIANO LESSONS
Some piano teachers give you the option to reschedule one of your piano lessons if you know in advance that you will be unable to attend your piano lesson at the normally scheduled time. Most piano teachers will not reschedule piano lessons on a regular basis. This is usually done infrequently.
TERMINATING PIANO LESSONS
All piano teacher policies should contain instructions regarding how to end your piano lessons if such a need arises. Most piano teachers require a minimum two-week notice. This usually means that once you provide notice (usually required in writing), then you are responsible for paying for your piano lessons two weeks after that notice has been given even if you do not attend those piano lessons.
Some piano teachers put specific practicing requirements in their piano teacher policies.