Parents Q & A
WELCOME TO MILTON BAND
We hope you will find the following questions and answers useful as you embark on the wonderful experience that is Milton Band!
Milton High School Band Programs
Q. How many band programs are available to students?
A. There are several opportunities for students to be involved in band. Below are the current options:
- Non-marching band - This includes Wind Ensemble, Symphonic and Concert bands. Participation in these bands requires an audition process for placement. Students in one of these bands receive school credit for participation.
- Percussion ensemble – This class is composed of 9th grade percussion students only. In grades 10 – 12, these students will then be placed in one of the bands noted above based on the audition process. Students in this ensemble also receive school credit for participation.
- Marching band and colorguard – These are extra-curricular activities. Students in marching band practice after school and perform at football games and competitions in the fall. There is no audition process for marching band. There is a place for all students who are interested in participating.
Other extra-curricular band activities include: indoor drumline (winter/spring), winterguard (winter/spring), jazz band and pit orchestra.
Q. Can my student participate in marching band without being enrolled in non-marching band?
A. No. Students must be enrolled in non-marching band to participate in marching band.
Q. My student is in colorguard. Is that considered part of marching band?
A. Absolutely! Colorguard is like any other section of the marching band (e.g, trumpets, front ensemble, battery) and is the visual ensemble that complements the marching band.
Q. Will my student receive physical education (PE) credit for participating in marching band?
A. Yes, if your student meets the necessary requirements. (See question below for additional details.) It is important to note that students who waive the PE course will still need 23.0 credit hours for graduation.
Q. What is the attendance policy for marching band?
A. Members of the Milton High School Marching Band are required to attend all practices, games and competitions. Participation in band camp at Reinhardt University (July 15 -20, 2018) is mandatory. The attendance policy is key to the success of the program and the experience students receive. Additionally, lack of compliance with the attendance policy will negatively affect a student's eligibility for the PE credit waiver for participation in marching band.
Examples of excused and unexcused absences.
- Sick and not in school
- Death in the family
- Religious holiday
- School activity-conflict excused by the Director WELL in advance (more than two weeks’ notice)
- Dentist/Orthodontist appointment
- Driving test
- Homework (time management is important!)
- Attending a rock concert or sporting event
- Trips (vacations) without proper advance notice (at least two weeks)
- Working a shift at The Amphitheatre
- No transportation (section leaders can assist you with rides if you need one)
Q. When is the Band Banquet and who should attended?
A. The Band Banquet is held each May to celebrate the many achievements of our band students. We want all students and parents to attend! It's a fun evening!
Staying Connected and Involved
Q. How do I stay connected?
A. There are a variety of ways to be informed about Milton Band activities, such as:
- The Milton Band website (www.miltonband.org), which includes an up-to-date calendar of events.
- Weekly band emails – To sign up, use this LINK.
- Shuminders (a text system) – To subscribe, text @6e7bf4d.
- The Milton Band Facebook page is another good source of informing the parents.
- Booster Meetings – Meet with fellow parents once a month in the MHS Band Room to learn about upcoming band events. Dates will be on the band calendar.
- Gather with other band parents during the front lawn concerts before games and during games and competitions, as well as Spirit Nights! More on Spirit Nights under “Fundraising.”
- Volunteering – The opportunities are many and varied. See separate Q&A on this activity.
- Ask questions! The Booster Board is here to help! Don’t hesitate to reach out to us HERE.
Q. How do I become involved in the activities of Milton Band?
A. Attend Booster meetings, attend games and performances and volunteer.
Q. What can I do?
A. We have volunteer activities to suit everyone’s skill set, interests and schedule. These activities range from fitting concert wear and making minor repairs (e.g., hemming), assisting with marching band uniforms to building props and chaperoning and feeding meals to our band students, to name a few.
Q. Why should I volunteer?
A. There are so many good answers to this question. Here are a few:
- It’s required. The Milton Booster Club is run by volunteers and supports the Band Director and Assistant Director with all aspects of the band program to ensure a positive experience for all students. If we don’t have enough volunteers, the quality of the experience could be negatively impacted. All of us have busy lives with work and other family commitments. However, as the saying goes, “Many hands make light work.”
- Meeting some great people; band families have their own special network and have fun together!
- Involvement in the activity that your child is so passionate about. The high school years fly by, and your child will be heading off to college before you know it.
- Interaction with the wonderful students that your child spends so much time with.
- Marching Band students are some of the smartest and most involved students in the school. Volunteering side-by-side with other parents is a great way to help you understand how to help your student navigate their high school experience, get other perspectives and learn what is going on in school.
Q. Who do I contact if I have an interest in a certain volunteer activity?
A. Click HERE that details the various activities under each Booster Board member. If you can’t find what you are looking for and still have questions, contact the Booster President (firstname.lastname@example.org), who can point you in the right direction. The weekly band emails also highlight upcoming events that need volunteer assistance.
Q. What is the volunteer commitment per family?
A. We ask that each family volunteer at least 40 hours, but you don’t have to stop there! There is always something to do and help is always needed! The 40-hour volunteer commitment runs from July to June of the following year to coincide with the school year and the Booster Club’s fiscal year.
Q. How are volunteer hours tracked?
A. Hours are recorded by the chairperson in each area and are turned into the Band Secretary once per month.
Q. Why does the band have fundraising activities?
A. As with most school organizations and clubs, fundraising provides the additional resources needed to run a successful program while keeping band fees as low as possible. The income from these activities funds all band activities, travel, clinicians and allows for the purchase of new instruments and other items needed for our band students.
Q. I keep hearing about the Milton Band’s Amphitheatre fundraiser. What is this and how does it impact me?
A. This is Milton Band’s single largest fundraiser. Band families staff a concession stand during events at the Amphitheatre. As a result, Milton Band receives a payment of $50 per volunteer to staff these events, which goes directly into the band’s operating budget. We usually need 25 – 30 volunteers per event.
Each family is required to work a specified number of Amphitheatre shifts between March (the first event) and October/November (the last event). The number of required shifts varies by year and is dependent on the number of families participating in band. Families of marching band (which includes colorguard) and non-marching band students are required to meet their respective commitments. In 2019, marching band/colorguard families are required to work 6 shifts plus one additional shift for each student in the program; non-marching band families are required to work 2 shifts plus one additional shift for each student in the program.
Of note, each person that works a concert counts as 1 shift. For example, if you and a family member or friend, etc. work an Amphitheatre event, this counts as two shifts towards your Amphitheatre requirement. These shifts may also be used toward service hour commitments for MHS groups with sponsor approval.
Q. What is WCI?
A. WCI is short for White Columns Invitational (WCI), which is the marching band competition that Milton Band hosts every year in the Fall. This too is a significant fundraiser for the band, which takes much advanced planning and all hands on deck the day of the event!
Q. What other fundraisers does Milton Band have?
A. In addition to the Amphitheatre and WCI, Milton Band has several other fundraisers, and all of the proceeds from these activities positively impact the band’s budget. A partial list includes the following:
- Football program – Milton Band sells advertisements to local businesses that are placed in the football program. This is also an opportunity for band, football and cheer families to purchase ads for their graduating senior. It’s a beautiful keepsake.
- Spirit wear – The Milton Band produces and sells all of the Milton spirit wear.
- Taste of Alpharetta – Milton Band, along with another local high school, sell all of the bottled water and soft drinks sold at Taste of Alpharetta.
- Spirit Nights – During marching season, band families meet at a local restaurant and enjoy a meal together with a portion of the proceeds from that night being given to Milton Band.