FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can my child take more than the class requirement in her level?
Students are encouraged to take more classes when their schedules permit. Students in the Lower School (through Level 2) are required to take one class per week, but they may sign up for more than one section in that level. Once students enter the Upper School, they may access a variety of Supplementary Classes.
What does my child wear to class?
What happens if my child arrives at the school and has forgotten her/his dance attire at home?
Our School Administrator keeps a stock of donated leotards, ballet slippers, tights, and hair supplies in her office. Your child simply needs to ask to borrow them for the day and make sure they return them to the office after their class finishes.
Will my child have an opportunity to perform?
Students in Fairy Tale Dance and First Steps demonstrate their accomplishments before their parents in an open classroom at the end of each term. Students in Pre-Ballet through Level 10, Modern, Contemporary, and Advanced Ballet classes perform in our annual spring production of a full-length ballet. This experience is an important part of their ballet education, enabling them to both collaborate with other students and develop an appreciation for the genre’s finest works. Nearly all of our students perform, but if a student would rather just study and not perform, that option is always available. Students in the Lower School (Pre-Ballet through Level 2) perform on only one of the two performance days. Students in Levels 3 and up perform both days.
Yes, students purchase a costume for the performance of their primary class, Modern and Contemporary. ASB makes every attempt to keep this one-time purchase cost as low as possible for families. Fall registration includes a $40 costume deposit for the Lower School and a $50 deposit for the Upper School. This deposit is refundable only if parents inform the school on or before December 1st that their child will not be performing in the spring, or if the child is unable to perform due to extended illness or injury. Parents pay their costume balance in January with spring term tuition.
Do I need to purchase costumes for the spring production?
We do not tolerate tardiness and strictly enforce our policy below. Students must warm up at the barre before working in center, and late students miss this important warm up and are prone to injury. Tardiness is also disrespectful to the teachers, and distracting to other students. Parents should only register their children for classes which they can realistically enter on time. Please understand that arriving on time to class means being in the classroom ready to work at the assigned start time.
What is your policy about tardiness?
If a student is going to be more than five minutes late to class, she or he must ask the teacher for permission to enter the classroom. Entry is at the discretion of the teacher and may be refused. Students late to class by ten minutes or more are automatically marked absent and may not enter the classroom. A student missing a class for any reason, including tardiness, may make up the class. A student may not be asked back to the school for a subsequent semester or promoted to the next level if he or she has been chronically tardy, as it erodes the integrity of the classroom experience for others. We also appreciate a courtesy call to the school when your child is going to be absent.
Our Tardiness Policy:
The school operates on a two-semester calendar. Parents are required to pay the full semester’s tuition prior to the beginning of school, either by cash or check payable to Acton School of Ballet. We do not accept credit cards. This payment is non-refundable, except in the case of injury or illness with an accompanying doctor’s note. We do not make exceptions to this policy, and thank you for your understanding.
How does payment of tuition work?
Students may begin pointe study only after passing our Pointe Readiness Evaluation. Generally, students at ASB are able to take the evaluation at the end of Level 4, or during their year in Level 5, depending on their age and growth. Students who do not pass the evaluation the first time may take it at a later date, usually at the suggestion of their teacher. Many students do not start pointe work until midway through Level 5 through Level 6. Students may be required to take a second year of Level 6 to strengthen pointe work before advancing to Level 7. A transfer student who was on pointe at another school is required to take a placement class on pointe to determine if she is ready or needs more preparatory work.
What is your pointe policy? My daughter was on pointe at another school. Can she continue on pointe at ASB if she transfers?
Please call the administrator and give us the details of your child’s background, age, and training. We will assess correct fit for a placement class and have the student come and take one of our regular syllabus classes as a guest. This gives us a chance to ascertain a proper level for your student. Our goal is to place new students in levels which will be challenging, but not overwhelming.
My child was trained at a different school, but now wants to transition to ASB. How would she/he do this?
Boys and girls take their technique classes together. For the first time, we are offering a Boy’s Class on Wednesday’s from 4:00-5:00 with Joseph Jefferies during which the students will be taught strength and conditioning exercises, as well as technique specifically for male dancers.
Do you offer separate classes for boys?
No, the school is not guaranteed to be nut-free, but we do not knowingly serve any products which have peanuts at school functions. We encourage families not to bring allergy-causing snacks into the school but we can’t always enforce this recommendation. Parents of children with allergies should consider whether the school policy is consistent with their own doctors’ directives. Health issues should always be noted on your child’s registration form.
My child has a nut allergy. Is the school a peanut-free zone?
Yes, students are encouraged to take a make-up class in any other section of their level. Please check the schedule to see when other sections of your child’s level meet and have the student notify the teacher he/she is taking a makeup class.
Do you have a makeup policy for illness?
Dance classes are aerobic and often sweat-producing. Students are expected to wear clean leotards and tights, and air out their ballet slippers after classes. We recommend students in the Upper School always bring extra deodorant in their dance bags, as well as other personal hygiene items as needed. Girls should remove their pointe shoes from their dance bags every night and air them out by leaning them up against a wall.
What is your policy on student hygiene?
We have two dressing rooms available to students, one on each level. We recommend that students not bring valuables or excessive cash in their bags, as these rooms are unmonitored. If a student loses an item, they should check the lost and found bins in these rooms. Any lost valuable items such as jewelry or cell phones that we find are kept in the Administrator’s office for safe keeping until retrieved by their owners. Also, please make sure all of your child’s dance attire is labeled with their name, especially their ballet slippers.
Where do students leave their belongings when they are in class?
If the school must close due to snow, the announcement is posted on our web site and on our phone by 10 a.m. for afternoon classes and 8 a.m. for morning classes. We often, but do not always follow, the local public school snow closings, as we must take into account the travel concerns of students and faculty from over 30 different communities. If we must close the school, students are encouraged to make up classes later in the week in another section of their level.
How do you handle snow days?
Parents are expected to support their child’s education at the school. We expect our students to arrive on time for their classes with proper, clean attire and hair supplies, be rested, in good health, with nutritional support before aerobic work (i.e. not hungry because they did not get a snack after school). The number one stress that afflicts students is the fear that they are going to arrive late to class. We ask that parents try to alleviate this by allowing extra time to navigate traffic and parking.
What are the Acton School of Ballet’s expectations of parents?
We keep an active file of universities which offer ballet programs and keep abreast of new programs. We are happy to meet with parents and students to discuss our opinions about these programs. We can also offer guidance regarding auditions for professional companies. We actively write letters of recommendation, maintain relationships with other teaching faculties, and research opportunities for our older students.