SMS Terms & Conditions of lessons

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Solihull Music Service Terms and Conditions  for Instrumental and Ensemble lessons:

2020-21 Terms and Conditions for billing direct lessons and ensembles

Terms and Conditions – Instrumental Music Lessons

a) Instrumental lessons will be taught by staff employed by Solihull Music Service and delivered in term time with 33 lessons offered across the academic year of 38 weeks.

b) The provision of these lessons is subject to demand and availability of Music Service staff and available accommodation at the school/centre.

c) Invoices requesting payment will be sent a term in arrears and calculated on the number of lessons delivered each academic term. Parents can choose to pay either by direct debit or through e-payments on the council website. Charges for all music lessons are reviewed by the SMBC annually in April each year.

d) Credits are not normally given for lessons missed by pupils. However, in the case of notification of long-term illness (accompanied by a doctor’s note), or prior notice in writing of unavoidable or compulsory school events, consideration may be given. Please submit any requests you wish to be considered in advance by email to

e) Withdrawal Process – Please note that half-a-term’s notice of withdrawal from lessons must be given in writing to Solihull Music Service via email to .If such notice is not received, half a term’s fees will be charged in lieu.

f) In a small number of cases a pupil may withdraw from a shared or group lesson which can result in the lesson type becoming unfeasible. In this case Solihull Music Service will contact parent/guardians to offer an alternative lesson type giving pupils half a term’s notice of any change.

g) Families receiving Free School Meals and Looked After Children may qualify for free lessons and instrumental hire. For further information please email

h) Daytime school based lessons: If parents / caregivers are struggling to fund instrumental lessons for their child, they should approach the school who may be able to help in certain circumstances.

i) All music must be paid for by the pupil.

j) Hire of instruments – Parents wishing to hire an instrument for lessons at £10 per term payable in advance, may contact the Music Service directly. Please note that not all instruments are available and are issued on a first come first served basis and demand often exceeds supply.

k) By signing up for SMS centre lessons – subject to receiving further information, I agree to my child taking part in concerts and events organised by Solihull Music Service.

Terms and Conditions – Borough Ensembles

a) For the majority of Borough Ensembles there are no formal auditions to enter the system. Pupils are placed into the ensemble that best matches both their technical and musical abilities. Each ensemble director will assess the progress and attainment of all pupils in the ensemble as part of an on-going cycle throughout the year. Progression to a more advanced group will usually happen in January and/or September each year in consultation with the ensemble director.

b) A flat-rate charge is made for membership of Borough Ensembles, no matter how many ensembles the pupil is in. For this fee we will try to ensure that we provide at least thirty rehearsals and three concerts in each year. The exact number of rehearsals each term will vary in line with school term dates, and the dates of all events will be published in advance. A charge may also be made for tickets for concerts to cover costs of the hire of the venue etc.

c) Families receiving Free School Meals and Looked After Children may qualify for free ensemble membership. For further information please email

d) All those eligible for free school meals maybe eligible for remission of fees.

e) Once a student joins an ensemble, parents should make sure that all contact details are updated using the online application portal to ensure we are able to maintain regular contact to provide information about concerts and other events being organised by the Music Service.

f) Parents and students must agree to be committed to their group, and accept the membership expectations. Membership is generally expected for a minimum of one academic year. Termination of membership before this is only acceptable under exceptional circumstances.

g) Regular, punctual attendance at all rehearsals and concerts is expected. Children should arrive ten minutes before the start of the rehearsal to set up and be ready to play. Please allow for traffic delays when planning your journey to the Music Service.

h) Requests for known absence should be made in advance, preferably in writing to the conductor. For unexpected absence, e.g. illness, please email the Music Service at prior to the start of the rehearsal. Following three unacceptable absences during a term, a student’s membership will be reviewed.

i) Prior to concerts and events you will receive confirmation of relevant information e.g. location, travel arrangements, start and end times. The expectation will be that your child will perform in each concert. If your child however is unable to attend please email the ensemble director via

j) Mobile phones should be turned off during rehearsals and concerts. Eating and drinking is not permitted during rehearsals, although children may bring small bottles of water. In the event that a student’s behaviour or attitude persistently affects the progress of the ensemble, or contravenes the above conditions then they may be asked to discontinue membership. In this extreme case the decision of the Head of Service will be final.

k) The safety and wellbeing of your child is always our first priority, therefore it is imperative that we maintain up-to-date emergency contact details. Our duty of care will commence as your child arrives for the event, and will normally end on his/her departure from the venue at the end of the event. Please ensure your child is collected at the end of the rehearsal in a timely manner.

l) All our rehearsals, concerts and events are risk assessed, organised and supervised in line with our Safeguarding Policy, which has been developed in conjunction with Solihull’s LSCB.

m) Subject to receiving further information, I agree to my child taking part in concerts and events organised by Solihull Music Service throughout their membership of the ensemble system.

Reviewed April 2019 – Solihull Music Service