For everyone's safety during the current health crisis, all NCMC lessons and programs will be taught exclusively online
through the summer of 2021. Please register only if this arrangement is acceptable to you. Thank you.
Policies and Procedures
REGISTRATION (Academic Year)
The academic year begins the Monday after Labor Day, and ends sometime between the last week of May and the third week of June, depending on the day of the week and its corresponding holidays and snow days.
Students must enroll for the full academic year, or for the full length of the course for which you are enrolling. New students may enroll at any time during the year for most programs and tuition will be prorated. A non-refundable registration fee is required for all courses of study at NCMC, as follows:
Private Lessons (academic year): $40/student; $65/family (per year)
Private Lessons (summer only): $15/student (waived for students continuing from previous academic year)
Group Classes, Ensembles & Workshops: $15/participant (per season)
A completed and signed registration form, registration fee, and deposit must be received by NCMC prior to the student attending any lessons or classes. Students wishing to apply for financial aid should do so prior to registering, as scholarships are not awarded retroactively.
Tuition may be paid in full or in installments using a credit or debit card (through our secure online Stripe terminal). Students enrolling for seasonal classes or ensembles must pay in full upon registration. Recipients of financial aid and/or multi-enrollment households who would like to arrange a modified payment plan should contact the Registrar.
Quarterly Payment Due Dates:
25% of tuition, plus registration fee due upon enrollment
25% of tuition due Nov 10
25% of tuition due Jan 10
25% of tuition due Mar 10
Overdue balances that cannot be rectified by NCMC with a valid credit card will accrue surcharges at a rate of 5% per month. To avoid suspension from a program, students are urged to contact the Executive Director promptly to discuss any problems with payment. Students with outstanding balances may not register for any additional programming at NCMC until full payment is remitted.
MISSED LESSONS & MAKE-UP POLICY
Regular attendance is expected of all students. It is common courtesy to give teachers 24 hours notice if you cannot attend a lesson for any reason. Students are financially responsible for all lessons, including those for which they are absent. Students who miss two consecutive lessons without notification will be withdrawn at the Director’s discretion and no refund will be issued.
Lessons or classes canceled by the teacher or by NCMC will be made up at a later date. Make-up lessons that are scheduled but then missed by a student will not be rescheduled, and that lesson will be forfeited by the student without a refund. In cases of inclement weather, lessons and classes held prior to noon at NCMC will be canceled when the Northampton Public Schools close. For cancellations after noon, please call the NCMC office for recorded announcements.
Students are expected to avail themselves through the month of June for make-up lessons. Students who anticipate being unavailable in June must notify the Registrar upon enrollment, so other arrangements for make-up lessons can be made earlier in the year, where possible.
PRIVATE LESSONS: Within 48 hours of a student’s first private lesson with a teacher, the student may withdraw without further financial obligation. Otherwise, students may, with two weeks’ notice, withdraw from private lessons without penalty before October 31 (or within 30 days of a student’s first lesson of the academic term). After this date, an early withdrawal fee equal to 25% of the tuition for the remaining lessons will be applied.
GROUP CLASSES: Group classes (choruses, ensembles, young child classes, etc.) can only run when a minimum enrollment is met, so once registered all participants are expected to regularly attend classes, rehearsals and/or performances, practice at home, and complete the term for which they have enrolled. Out of fairness to others, withdrawals from group classes and prorated refunds will not be granted.
If a medical condition prevents a student from continuing, a written request for a withdrawal without penalty must be made to the Executive Director immediately. In-house credits issued by NCMC’s Registrar or Executive Director must be used within the academic year they are issued (or specified window), after which they will be nullified.
Students with limited financial resources are strongly encouraged to apply for financial aid.
It is the intent of the Music Center that no serious student should be unable to study because of financial constraints. Financial aid is awarded on an annual basis and is applied to all remaining lessons and classes for the academic year, plus the subsequent summer. Until an application has been processed, full tuition applies. NCMC cannot award financial aid retroactively.
Returning students reapplying for financial aid must be in good standing to be considered for a financial aid award. Unpaid account balances, excessive absences, or other issues may result in an application denial.
NCMC admits students of any race, color, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, physical ability, religion, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school, nor does NCMC discriminate in its hiring of faculty or staff, or in the administration of its educational policies, admission policies, scholarship programs, and other school-administered programs.
NCMC routinely photographs its programs and events, including individuals partaking in them for promotional purposes. If any student objects to being photographed or filmed, we ask that they submit this request in writing upon registration, and we will do our best to honor their request.
A NOTE ABOUT RECITALS AND OUTREACH PERFORMANCES
Studio recitals may be scheduled by teachers, and are free and open to the public. Students who are interested in performing should make arrangements with their teachers. Tuition fees do not cover the cost of accompanists to rehearse or perform with students. When necessary, an equal portion of the required fee will be collected from each student who requires this service.
NCMC faculty members and students are encouraged to engage in special community outreach opportunities organized by NCMC (for example, student performances at local nursing homes as part of NCMC’s Music & Alzheimer’s Project). These opportunities benefit fellow non-profit organizations and individuals, while at the same time providing a unique educational experience for the students participating. On occasion, with NCMC’s permission, a teacher may substitute a student’s regular lesson for their participation in such an event.
The study of music can be a joyous and rewarding experience. It offers a unique opportunity to develop one’s self-expression, artistry and discipline. For an overview of NCMC's expectation of students, please click here.
SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING LESSONS AND CLASSES THAT MEET AFTER HOURS OR ON WEEKENDS
After hours and on weekends, parents of younger students must accompany their child into the building for their lesson. The front door locks automatically at 7:30 each weekday evening, so arrangements with the teacher for entry into the building must be made in advance.
Applications for financial aid must be completed each year. Awards are applicable from September 1 to August 31.
Applications must be completed by an adult age 18 or older who is either the legal guardian of children who will benefit from this award or the individual who will directly benefit from this award.
It is the intent of the Music Center that no serious student should be unable to study because of financial constraints. Until an application has been processed, full tuition applies and NCMC cannot award financial aid retroactively. There are no full scholarships, and awards range from 10-60% off NCMC’s regular tuition rates. Families are strongly encouraged to share all information that most effectively substantiates their need.
Supporting Documentation: Applications must be accompanied by the first 2-3 pages of form 1040 from the most recent federal tax return filed for the household of the student applying, even if it does not accurately represent the family’s current financial situation. In situations of joint custody, parents of both households must supply their tax returns. Families who have not filed a federal tax return within the past two years will be required to supply other documentation substantiating their household income and should contact the Executive Director before applying. All documents are kept strictly confidential.
Note: EBT (electronic benefit transfer) cardholders automatically qualify for assistance upon completion of a financial aid application (amounts will vary based on information supplied).
All students at NCMC are expected to attend lessons regularly and be on time, to practice regularly, and to inform the Music Center and teacher well in advance if they must miss a lesson. All students are encouraged, but not required, to participate in recitals and to volunteer at events that raise funds for NCMC’s scholarship program whenever possible. Failure to attend lessons, practice regularly, treat teachers and fellow students with respect, and meet payment deadlines may result in revocation of financial aid.
Returning students reapplying for financial aid must be in good standing to be considered for a financial aid award. Unpaid account balances, excessive absences, or other issues may result in denial of an application.
Please read "Expectations of NCMC Students in our Policies and Procedures" at ncmc.net/policies. (Paper copies also available.)
Financial aid recipients may choose payment in full, quarterly or monthly payments. This will be coordinated with the Registrar upon confirmation of enrollment.
To apply, click here.