MP Band – Newsletter for 30 August – 5 September 2020

Good Morning All,

 

Second week of school is winding down.  I know there continue to be issues with technology, etc., but that is to be expected.  Overall, you all have done a great job.  As stated last week, we will continue to have issues due to the nature of how we are conducting business.  I ask that you try to be patient.  We will figure this out all out together.

 

NEWSLETTER FOR 30 AUG – 5 SEP 2020

 

ASSIGNMENTS FOR 24 – 28 AUG:  All assignments for students are posted in Canvas.  At this point, I don’t believe I have any students who are having a hard time logging in to Canvas, but if you are, please let me know ASAP.  We began to get in to some playing tasks and some music theory tasks.  All directions for the tasks are can be found when you click into the assignment, and hopefully they are easy to follow.  If you are having issues with any task, let me know ASAP so that I may help you.  I can’t help you if you don’t communicate that you need the help.

 

I assigned a great deal of playing assignments this week.  These assignments are things that the students need to start implementing daily in their practice sessions at home.  They are a mix of technique and scalular exercises.  These items will be assessed very soon, so students need to start working them now.  As we make our way through the school year, more will be added to their plate, so they need to get these items now so they do not fall behind.

 

We also began the process of learning the skill set of sight reading.  Students have two playing sight reading exercises that they need to perform by Sunday at 11:59 p.m. for a grade.

 

I am happy to say that we also passed out our first piece of music to begin looking at this week.  It is strange to begin learning concert literature in a remote situation, but I equate this process to how professional symphonic performers work.  They do all of their practicing and learning of their concert literature away from the ensemble.  They get together closer to when the concerts are supposed to happen to put everything together with only a few rehearsals before the gig.  Lots of trust is put into the individual players that they come prepared.  There is no spoon feeding.  One carrot each of those performers have over their head is their paycheck.  We don’t necessarily have pay checks over our head, but we will need to adopt a similar method of working.  I am hopeful we can get together very soon and make music together, but individuals will need to come in prepared.  They will have to come in with their music learned.  We won’t have time to spoon feed.

 

For our theory components, I gave some very brief lessons for them to study.  Students will be assessed on those concepts.  They need to study those, memorize those, and be prepared.

 

Students need to get in a habit of making sure items are turned in on time.  Unlike the spring, all assigned tasks count.  You will be held accountable for completion/non-completion of a task.  If you have an issue completing a task, please contact me ASAP.  Communication is key…….

 

STUDENT FEES:  All students in the band class have a $10 semester fee that the county charges to help offset the cost of materials used in band class.  We also have a $25 per semester fee for those who utilize a school owned instrument.  These fees can be paid through the K12 Payment Portal (https://www.k12paymentcenter.com/) or you can write a check to Cabarrus County Schools and deliver it to me for those fees (we can work out a plan to meet).  These fees need to be paid by 4 September 2020.

 

SCHOOL OWNED INSTRUMENTS/MATERIALS:  There are still a few of you that need to get access to a school owned instrument.  I need you to link up with me ASAP about a date and time you can come by to pick these up.  You have playing assignments that you need to be working on and that is impossible to do without an instrument.  These assignments will eventually turn into assessments that will have a major effect on your grade.

 

I have done the work to ensure we have things for you.  I need you to do the next part…….communicate when you can pick these things up.  It is that easy.

 

PERCUSSIONIST:  I have materials still coming in for you.  As soon as these things get here, we will figure out a day and time that works to get this stuff passed out to you.  For now, use the materials you have at your disposal right now to practice.  Do the best you can.

REMIND APP:  For those that are in the band classes, I will be pushing out information via the Remind App.  This system will be used to send you quick text messages about important info for each one of my classes.  Please sign up for the appropriate class:

PLACES TO GET INFORMATION:  There are several places to get information concerning the band.  The main places find things are in this order:

  • Cut Time (www.cuttime.net) – This is an administrative management system we use in the band program for calendar management, communication, inventory control, etc.  Veteran parents should have accounts.  New parents will get set up with accounts soon.  All students should have accounts at this point.  If you do not remember your CutTime logins, please e-mail me to help you get that back up and running with that.
  • MP Band Website (www.mpband.org) – Newsletters, calendars, etc. can be found here.  This website is updated regularly.
  • Mr. Lee’s Webpage (https://www.cabarrus.k12.nc.us/Domain/11356) – This website will be updated, but best bet would be to check the MP Band website first.
  • Canvas Page – This will primarily be utilized for assignment management.  All other items (newsletters, etc.), will be found in these other places.

MARCHING BAND/COLORGUARD INFORMATION:  Late last Friday, an update to the start of athletics and fine art activities was announced.  See announcement below:

 

CCS Announces Plans for Phased Return to

High School Athletic and Performing Arts Workouts

Cabarrus County Schools today (Friday, 21 Aug 2020) announced a phased return to high school skill development workouts for both Athletics and Fine Arts beginning Sept. 14, 2020.

The decision to begin a phased approach is the result of ongoing collaboration among CCS administration, high school athletic directors and high school principals. The re-entry timelines mirror the order of the seasons recently announced in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association’s (NCHSAA) revised sports calendar for the 2020-21 school year.  Planning for a revised Middle School Sports Calendar is under way and will be announced soon.

CCS’ implementation plan will comply with North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS), Cabarrus Health Alliance (CHA) and NCHSAA guidelines for enhanced safety measures and procedures to protect the health of our students and staff.

“We are pleased that the NCHSAA has now provided a revised sports calendar due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Bryan Tyson, director of athletics for Cabarrus County Schools. “We can now plan for a safe and phased in re-entry to skill development workouts based upon the order in which seasons will now occur.”

Students’ return to workouts will be staggered, and not all coaches will choose to start on the first day of their re-entry timeline since many seasons have now been moved to the second semester. Specific and up-to-date information will be released closer to the September 14th start date for volleyball, cross country and swimming (land workouts).

Currently, all N.C. public schools are operating under the NCHSAA Phase 2 restrictions and guidelines. It is important to note that this is a tentative re-entry plan that could be adjusted should the Governor, NCHSAA or state and/or local health agencies announce changes.

Two-Week Staggered Re-entry to Skill Development Workouts

Sept. 14 Volleyball, Cross Country, Swim (land workouts), Theatre Ensembles
Sept. 28 Basketball, (m) Soccer, Cheer
Oct. 12 Football, Band, Chorus
Oct. 26 (m/w) Golf, (w) Soccer, Softball, (m) Tennis
Nov. 9 Baseball, (w) Tennis, Wrestling

 

“Although this pandemic has caused a major disruption to many aspects of our lives, including athletics and fine arts, Cabarrus County Schools is fully committed to doing all that we can to safely provide the opportunities that our students deserve,” Tyson added.

 

We are still in a holding pattern for the time period when it comes to trying to do any sort of rehearsals or activities.  This does not mean you, the students, can’t get together to rehearse.  This just means we (the staff and I) cannot hold any official rehearsals.  The staff and I will begin to work out plans to have safe and effective rehearsals when we can actual have them.  As stated before, the MP Band will thrive and evolve its offerings to serve our students and community.  We will get creative in our offerings and explore new avenues.

 

With the start of school, I have had to put marching band related items to the side.  As you can imagine, it has been extremely busy around here just to get school started.  I am hoping that in the coming days we will begin to share much more detail to the adjustments made to the season and share exciting new opportunities for our students and our parents.  These adjustments will include:

 

  • What will those rehearsals look like?
  • Marching band fees (refunds, etc.) – I will be working with our band boosters to figure out the best way to make this happen for you.
  • Performance opportunities (football games (during the new timeframe designated by the NCHSAA), winterguard, WGI winds / winter percussion (?), community performances, etc.)
  • Continued student leadership training

 

TO CLOSE:  Again, thank you for doing your best.  This learning situation is not easy, but I feel confident we will be in a good spot once we return face to face.  As mentioned last week, please continue to practice patience.  I am having to work really hard on that…….

 

If you have any issues, questions, etc., feel free to contact me at keith.lee@cabarrus.k12.nc.us.

 

v/r,

 

Keith J. Lee

Director of Bands

Mount Pleasant High School

 

E-mail:  keith.lee@cabarrus.k12.nc.us

Office Phone:  704.260.6690 ext. 76707

Cell Phone:  704.224.4695

Website:  www.mpband.org

Address:  700 Walker Road, Mount Pleasant, NC  28124-9596