Covid-19 (Novel Coronavirus) Update
Welcome to the Pride of Herndon band family! With so many variables about Fall 2020 up in the air, we’re working hard to respond to our rapidly changing world. Please know that our staff and parent volunteers are constantly re-evaluating our plans moving forward in regards to safety, cost, and music-making. Here are some of the status updates.
1. Summer activities - band camp and uniform fitting
We will modify our traditional calendar as FCPS and Virginia come out with social distancing guidelines for the summer and fall. We’re considering hybrid models of virtual instruction and limited face-to-face instruction. Currently our priority is student engagement and connection.
Drumline and guard will be offering online workshops throughout the summer for any interested students, regardless of their primary instrument or band enrollment
Uniform fittings, which are traditionally held in the evenings during band camp, will be scheduled to accommodate as few families inside the building as possible. They will not occur until it’s deemed safe for limited contact.
Below is our “normal” calendar. We’re working on how realistic/productive online training is, and watching the research closely that is being funded by the National Band Association on distancing guidelines for wind players.
Four weeks before school starts (week of July 27): percussion, guard, and leadership begin training; new marchers are brought in to learn fundamentals
Three weeks before school starts (week of Aug 3) and two weeks before school starts (week of Aug 10): the entire band rehearses 8am-5pm to learn our marching show. Right now full band camp "as usual" looks unlikely unless prevention methods improve by August.
One week before school starts (week of Aug 17): The band rehearses during evenings 5-9pm, with a parent show and meeting on Thursday.
2. Status of marching band during the school year
Marching band is an odd hybrid: we follow fall sports schedule (dictated by VHSL) but it is also part of the Advanced Band curriculum. Should fall sports be postponed to the spring, we will likely reschedule our activities as well. Other options that we are exploring are also dependent on in-person campus instruction resuming – parades, elementary visits, and community performances.
3. Status of concert band
Concert band will continue to be offered as a standard course selection for next school year. Wind and Percussion players must enroll in the regular course in order to be in marching band. Online learning will be a mixture of 1:1 private lessons, small group sectionals online, and full band synchronous learning for literacy and theory work.
4. Audition for incoming freshmen
All freshmen are automatically enrolled in Symphonic Band (winds) or Percussion Ensemble (percussionists). Eighth graders who auditioned for Symphonic Winds or Wind Ensemble submitted their auditions into the Google Classroom on May 11. Please email Mrs. Jacoby directly if you have concerns about your placement.
5. Band fees
We will not assess any marching band fees until the first day of in-person training. The BPA has already agreed to cover all potential band camp costs to avoid the need for deposits (usually $50/student). The regular season fee of $250 will be reduced as our season is shortened, and the boosters will meet regularly to reassess true costs of the season and viability of our fundraisers/cost off-sets. We want families to be impacted as little as possible and plan to dynamically make changes throughout the coming months.
6. Fundraising events - Tag Day & Showcase
Our fundraisers happening is dependent on social distancing requirements. If we’re not able to solicit in person for donations (Tag Day), we may have to step up our online solicitations. We’re hoping that this coming year will incur far fewer costs because of the limited scope of the marching season.
For status of Showcase, visit Showcase 2020.
7. Band Awards Ceremony
The Band Awards Ceremony will be held virtually on May 26, 2020 at 7:00 pm. Current band students and families have been sent a zoom invite for the same.
8. HHS Band Parent Orientation
The HHS Band Parent Orientation will be held virtually on June 8th at 7:00 pm
Safety Recommendations for Playing and Cleaning Instruments
The cleaning process for musical instruments will vary depending upon the materials used in the construction of the instrument. Care should be taken to follow recommended procedures that will safely and effectively clean and disinfect while avoiding damage to the proper function or the finish of the particular instrument. In response to the current crisis, a consortium of organizations have joined together to provide COVID-19 Instrument Cleaning Guidelines for music educators to assist in teaching students and parents proper procedures for cleaning instruments.
The guidelines, prepared by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), The National Association for Music Education (NAfME), and the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM), provide a thorough explanation for cleaning musical instruments with consideration of the general cleaning guidance provided by the U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention