Studio Policy

Lesson Policies (Effective August 15, 2016)

TUITION RATE: The regular tuition rate for guitar, bass, ukulele, and teen/adult piano is $25 per 1/2 hour lesson, billed by the month ($100).  Students enrolled with a student teacher in the Kids Piano program are billed at $16.25 per lesson, also billed by the month ($65).   You will usually get 4 lessons per month, except in May and December; in those months, only 3 lessons are scheduled, as well as our Student Showcases, and the showcase serves as the 4th lesson. If there happens to be a 5th week in the month, then there is no lesson scheduled on the 5th week, and those days are available for makeup lessons if needed.  NEW POLICY EFFECTIVE AUG 15, 2017:  Tuition rate will be $160 per month for a 45 minute lesson once a week, 4 times a month.  Holiday closures will be pro-rated, and you will not be charged for holidays that we are closed.  You may take a $25 discount from a full month's tuition fee if you pay cash.  Pro-rated months are not eligible for the cash discount.  Half hour lessons, makeup lessons, and the student teacher fee will be retired.   

MAKEUP LESSONS: Makeup lessons are available on the open 5th weeks that regular lessons are not scheduled.  If you are going to be absent, and would like to schedule a makeup, please advise us at least one hour prior to the lesson that you are going to be absent from (if you know the week prior, that is even better).  Less than one hour notice, or a no-show, will result in loss of the lesson, and we will not be able to offer a makeup lesson, and, you will still have to pay for the missed lesson.  Due to our completely booked schedule, there is no other option nor opportunity for makeup lessons.  We have found that the once-per-quarter average timeframe for a 5th week makeup is adequate for the majority of students.  We appreciate your understanding.   NEW ATTENDANCE POLICY EFFECTIVE AUG. 15, 2017:  There is no provision nor opportunity for makeups.  You must either attend class, or, you may choose to miss class, at your prerogative.  There is no refund or reduction in fees if you miss class.  We do not accommodate your other obligations, such as sports or school events, the same as they do not accommodate ours.  If Mr. Norton has to be absent, you will be credited the amount of the lesson.  You will not be asked to re-schedule.

LESSON CREDITS:  If Mr. Norton or one of the junior instructors is absent, and there is no substitute teacher available, we will issue you a credit on your account in the amount of the missed lesson, to be applied to the next month's tuition invoice.

BAD WEATHER/WINTER CLOSINGS: We follow Poquoson
public schools with regard to closings. If they close or cancel evening activities, then we will close too. If they open on a two hour delay, we will open regular hours.  Bad weather closings can normally be made up at the next 5th week makeup day.

HOLIDAYS: We will be closed on the following major holidays: New Year's Day, Memorial Day, July 4, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year's Eve. Also, we will be closed Dec. 26-30, in order to celebrate the holidays with family. We have found that most families prefer not to attend lessons during this time, so it works out nicely.  We do not close for "minor" holidays (even though they might be federal holidays) such as MLK Day, President's Day, Columbus Day, etc.  If you are billed for a holiday that we are closed, the holiday will be made up at the nearest 5th week makeup day.  NEW POLICY EFFECTIVE AUG 15, 2017:  We will also close for the week of Spring Break, as observed by Poquoson schools, and, we will close the week of the 4th of July.

BILLING PROCESS: 

1)   Billing goes out on the 15th of the month, for the following month.  In other words, September’s billing goes out on August 15.

2)   Bills are due on the 25th of the same month that they are sent out.  In other words, September’s bill is due on August 25.  You will get an email reminder on the 26th.

3)   Bills are considered late on the 1st.  In other words, September’s bill is considered late on September 1.  You will get an email reminder on the 2nd.

4)   A $10 late fee will be added to bills not paid by the 1st

5)   Bills not paid by the 1st lesson of the month (normally sometime between the 1st and 7th of the month) will result in no lesson that day, and the student will be removed from the schedule until the account is paid in full, including the late fee, and any lessons missed as a result of non-payment.

6)   Bills are due whether the student attends class or not.  If you are going to be absent, please pay your bill prior to your absence.


FEE PAYMENT: we accept cash, checks, and major credit cards.  You may pay in person at the studio, or, you may also pay by credit card, or from your PayPal account, directly from your online invoice.  All transactions are encrypted for your security and peace of mind.  If paying by check, please make checks payable to Doug Norton.  We regret that we can’t accept post-dated checks, and, if your check is returned NSF, we will have to assess a $40 NSF fee.  Thanks for understanding.

STUDIO BEHAVIOR:  students and guests are expected to maintain a reasonable amount of self-control.  We will not tolerate running in the studio, jumping on or off the furniture, playing in the water, playing with the merchandise for sale, or destruction of studio property.  In addition, we have expensive and delicate equipment in the teaching rooms that is costly to repair and replace if damaged.  We reserve the right to terminate a lesson immediately and send a student or guest home if we determine that the student's or guest's conduct is disturbing or inappropriate to the studio environment.

UNACCOMPANIED MINORS:  Due to insurance regulations, we cannot have unaccompanied minors in the studio.  You are welcome to leave your child with us during their lesson, and run an errand.  However, please be back in time to get them when their lesson time is over.  Also, we cannot babysit your other children while you run your errand.

PHOTOGRAPHY AND VIDEO:  From time to time, we might video your child's lesson if it is an interesting song or concept, and post it on social media such as Facebook.  Your child is not personally identified except for their first name, and, we will tag you in the post so your friends can see it, also.  If you prefer that we do not video your child, please let Mr. Norton know, and he will not.  Also, our Student Showcases are broadcast live on Facebook, much to the delight of friends and family around the world who cannot attend our events in person.  If you would prefer that you child's performance not be broadcast, please advise us prior to the event, and we will accommodate your request.

TERMINATION OF LESSONS:  Mr. Norton reserves the right to terminate a lesson early if the student exhibits a bad attitude, lack of preparedness, lack of participation, or fails to bring their materials.  There is no refund for a lesson terminated.  Mr. Norton also reserves the right to discontinue lessons with a student if a student is habitually absent or tardy, or is habitually unprepared, habitually fails to practice during the week, or, if the student lacks commitment or enthusiasm toward their instrument.