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Departmental Policies and Procedures


Open communication between parent and teacher is critical to success in any educational endeavor. Parents are encouraged to attend group and/or private lessons at any time. We also urge you to call or e-mail to communicate directly with your child’s group and/or private teacher.

Each week students take a written assignment home from their lessons. Please check this assignment frequently for up-to-the-minute notices on calendar, activities, deadlines, etc. Any changes or additions to our published calendar will be prominently displayed here.

Exit Procedure

Under certain conditions, a student may be asked to discontinue music study in the Piano Preparatory Department at SMU. These conditions include, but are not limited to:

  • non-payment or recurrent lateness in payment of tuition
  • excessive absenteeism or tardiness
  • non-participation in departmental activities including private lessons, group lessons, recitals, and related activities
  • excessive and recurrent non-preparation of assignments
  • a consistent lack of practice
  • perception that our program may not be suited for the needs of a particular student
  • failure to participate in summer lessons in the Piano Preparatory Department at SMU

Although the teacher and/or directors may provide a written or verbal notice of dismissal, we reserve the right to dismiss students at any time with or without notification.


Tuition is due prior to lesson delivery. If tuition is not paid, we reserve the right to discontinue lessons and activities until tuition is paid.

Inclement Weather

In the event of inclement weather, our department will adhere to the university’s decision on closing. Group lessons will not be made up, but parents may contact instructors by the next week to request an individual make-up lesson. Under no circumstances will there be refunds for missed lessons.

Missed Lessons

As we see each student only once or twice a week, attendance at every lesson is vital to the success of all students. Group lessons missed by students cannot be made up under any circumstances. Private lessons missed by the instructor will be made up at a mutually convenient time. If a student is absent from a private lesson the instructor is not obligated to offer a make-up lesson under any circumstance unless prior arrangements have been made.
PLEASE NOTE: the students’ academic schedules are quite demanding for this double degree. Please respect that lesson days/times CANNOT be changed once the originally agreed-upon day/time is set.


Piano study is a year-round endeavor. Registration is for the entire year, August to July. If a student must withdraw before the end of the school year a pro rata refund of tuition may be made in the case of most extenuating circumstances at the joint discretion of the Director, the faculty, and the business office. A service fee will be assessed to account to cover administrative costs.

Picking Students Up and Dropping Them Off

It is the responsibility of the parent to see that the child/children are delivered safely to the private studio and group class, then picked up immediately following the lesson. The Piano Preparatory staff cannot be expected to supervise children prior to or following the group class or private lesson.


Free short-term (2 hours max) parking is available to all Prep families on the day of the lessons only. A pass will be provided to you at orientation. The faculty lot (Lot H) immediately adjacent to the south side of our building will be made available to you.

Summer Lessons

All students are required to enroll in a minimum of seven summer lessons (mid-May through August). These summer lessons are required to enroll for the following year. Lessons are scheduled on a flexible individual basis with the faculty member.

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