Parish-Based Music Schools Workshop

September 1, 2015

Developing a Program for the Local Community


As music education programs in public schools across the U.S. continue to face funding challenges, many congregations are working to fill the void in their communities by creating innovative programs that provide individual or group music lessons for local children. Such initiatives expand vital outreach, use existing church resources (both facilities and personnel) more fully, and can provide an additional revenue stream for the church.

The workshop aims to equip church musicians, clergy, and lay leadership with practical tools for creating and sustaining a thriving music instruction program in their parish setting. Artistic and administrative leaders of successful programs in three states will share their first-hand experiences, addressing topics such as

  • Assessing needs/opportunities for music education in the community
  • Establishing the program’s mission/purpose/values
  • Organizational structure & relationship with church administration/leadership
  • Hiring teachers, other personnel
  • Setting rates/payment deadlines, other policies
  • Facilities & instruments
  • Program administration & staffing
  • Beyond private lessons: group classes for pre-K through adult, instrumental ensembles, etc.