youth playing in concert

Family Handbook

Family/Parent Responsibilities

Our behavior rules are designed to foster professionalism, teamwork, and respect for fellow musicians. Please encourage your musician to fulfill their responsibilities.

Stay in Touch

Read our announcements

Every Thursday we send out an e-mail newsletter and post important, time-sensitive announcements on the website. Look for these emails and contact us if you aren’t receiving them.

Support BYSO

Pay tuition promptly

Learn more about tuition and fees. If tuition costs are a hardship for your family, financial assistance is available.

Volunteer at least once during the year

We ask each family contribute 4 volunteer hours per student. Our small staff relies on parent and high school student volunteers to help with auditions, retreats, and concerts. Learn about volunteer opportunities. If you cannot volunteer, share your support by donating or sponsoring our programs.

Help us fundraise

To help keep BYSO tuition affordable, we rely on donations and sponsorships from our families. There are opportunities to give throughout the year including our annual Pass the Hat campaign, our Growing Musicians Garden Party fundraiser event, online, or at our concerts. Don’t forget your company match! BYSO is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, so donations are fully tax-deductible. You may learn about our operations by reading our most recent Annual Report.

Like us on Social Media

We use social media to engage our online community. Like our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram – your support of our social pages goes a long way in strengthening our community presence.

Ensure Musician Attendance & Transportation

See pick up and drop off times and locations.

Support prompt and reliable attendance

Musicians are expected to attend all retreats, rehearsals, and concerts listed for their ensemble on our calendar. This includes anything scheduled on holidays or breaks for your school district. If the musician needs to arrive late, leave early, or miss an event altogether, they must notify their conductor ahead of time using the online form.

Drop your musician off at least 15 minutes early for all rehearsals and other events. This allows your musician time to find their seat and unpack their instrument.

Bad weather policy: a rehearsal or concert that is missed by a student due to bad weather will be excused if we are informed promptly. If you cannot get to a rehearsal, retreat, or concert safely, please stay home.

Pick up your musician on time

You must pick up your musician immediately after each rehearsal and concert unless other transportation has been arranged, such as a carpool or the student driving. For safety reasons, waiting students should remain inside the building.

If a parent is late to pick up their BYSO musician, a conductor or another adult will wait with the student until the parent arrives. (For student safety reasons, this is non-negotiable.) These staff members have their own schedules to keep. Therefore, in fairness to all, we cannot accommodate late pick-ups.

We enforce this policy as follows:

  1. The first time a parent is late to pick up their student, they will receive a notification email.
  2. The second time, the parent will be billed $10 per student for every 10 minutes they are late.
  3. Subsequent violations may result in dismissal from the organization.

If you are concerned that your personal or transportation circumstances will make you unable pick up your musician on time each week, please contact the BYSO office ahead of time so that we may help.


You may wish to consider arranging a rehearsal carpool with other parents in your student’s ensemble or an ensemble that rehearses at the same school. You can see where and when all our ensembles rehearse and make arrangements with BYSO parents by joining the BYSO Parent Facebook Group.

BYSO Rehearsals are “Parent Free”

We appreciate parents and other non-participants helping to prepare a room for rehearsal, but they must stay outside the room while the rehearsal is taking place.

Parent observation of rehearsals is extremely distracting both to the students and to the instructors (including observation through door windows). Quiet is essential near all rehearsal rooms.

We encourage parents to leave the building and return for their student promptly at the end of rehearsal. View start and end times for rehearsals.

Parents who choose to wait on-site while their BYSO student is rehearsing must stay in a designated parent waiting area, available at each school where we rehearse. All of our host schools are firm about not allowing “wandering” behavior from either students or parents. This is a legal liability issue for these schools as well as for us, and non-compliance may make BYSO unwelcome to rehearse there.

Attend Concerts

Each concert represents months of dedication and hard work on the part of every musician present. Your musician will be proud of what he or she has accomplished and will want to share it with you! Please note: your musician must stay for the entire concert in which they play. Listening to other students perform is an essential part of their music education. We encourage you to stay for the entire concert as well.

Parents must understand and respect BYSO’s Concert Etiquette guidelines. Personal video recording, sound recording, and photography are not allowed during BYSO concerts. Be respectful and arrive to concerts on time.

Tickets will go on sale approximately one month before each concert and will only be available for purchase online. If ticket costs are a hardship for your family, please contact our office.

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