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Advocating for brass bands in your child's school

Thursday, 5 May, 2022

What you can do to benefit your band, as a parent of a child of school age.

As a parent of a child of school age, you have a direct hotline to the people that brass bands need to talk to in schools. Here’s how you might be able to help make valuable links with significant music-related staff in your Youth Band’s ‘catchment area’.

Here are some ways to support your Youth Band Leader in their aim to maintain a steady stream of new talent to keep your local band alive.

 

I  N  M  U  S  I  C

 

  1. IDENTIFY. Find out the name and email address of the music lead teacher at your child’s school and share it with your Youth Band Leader (you’ll probably need to ask for permission).
  2. NUDGE. Encourage other parents to do the same. You could build a directory of valuable local contacts for the Youth Band to contact on a regular basis.
  3. MAKE CONTACT with your child’s music teacher and let them know that you (and maybe others in your family) play in a local brass band – parents often have access to a platform for messaging their child’s teacher as well as email, for example; Class DOJO – it’s quick and your child’s music teacher is more likely to read messages on these platforms on a daily basis.
  4. UPDATE your child’s music teacher with all your child’s musical activities, both as an individual and especially as part of the band that they play with. 
  5. SHARE advertising materials of all your band’s concerts and events with the school office and with parents you might see at the school gate. Maybe advertise band events in their school newsletter.
  6. INVOLVE yourself with the running of your child’s Youth Band – it doesn’t have to be much, but don’t be the parent that drops off their child and drives away. The valuable link that you have with your child’s teacher is like gold dust, and if you know what’s going on, you can pass it on.
  7. COMMUNICATE the wants and needs of your child’s Youth Band to your child’s school. Know your Youth Band’s aims. Get to know the aims of your child’s school’s music department too. If you’re able to create a rapport with their teacher, you have the potential to build a mutually beneficial relationship between school and band that could have longevity and be a valuable source of recruitment over many years.

 

Sheila Allen

Brass Foundations / BBE