Policies

Missed Lessons & Make-up Policies

In the event of any student absence, please notify your instructor in advance. If students miss a lesson due to conflicts, travel, or illness, they will receive one makeup lesson per semester in a group setting. If students miss their group makeup lesson, it will not be rescheduled. 

If a teacher misses a lesson, it will be made up as a private lesson at a mutually agreed upon time.

If students are absent without notification, the teacher will attempt to contact the student to determine the reason. After the second consecutive missed lesson without notice or contact, the student will be dismissed and the date of the second lesson will be considered the official withdrawal date. All withdrawal policies will be followed.

Tardiness

Students who are late for a lesson cannot be guaranteed their full lesson time. Faculty will wait for a student for one-third of the scheduled lesson time; students are asked to do the same.

Dismissal

OCM reserves the right to dismiss any student due to frequent absences, disciplinary problems, overdue tuition payments and/or noncompliance with the Conservatory's policies.

Recording

Other Policies

We are continuing to monitor developments surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) and are focused on recommendations from the CDC, local health officials and government agencies. There may be changes to these guidelines, as new information is received from government and health agencies.

  • Wellness check: Students and their guardians should not come to OCM if they have or have had in the past 14 days: a cough, a fever, shortness of breath, difficulties breathing, fatigue, flu-like symptoms, gastrointestinal upset or a loss of taste or smell. To encourage adherence to this requirement, the lesson may be converted to the virtual format if needed. Touch-free thermometers are available at the front desk to check temperatures upon arrival, if needed.
  • Exposure check: If a student or faculty member has been directly exposed (Less than 6 feet for 15 minutes with or without a mask, as defined by the CDC) to a person who tested positive for Covid, they should not come to OCM. To encourage adherence to this requirement, the lesson may be converted to the virtual format if needed.
  • Arrival at your lesson: To minimize time in the building, students and their guardians should enter the building no more than 5 minutes prior to their lesson. Teachers will finish lessons 3-5 minutes early to allow time for them to sanitize their space. In waiting for your lesson to start, social distancing must be maintained and we ask that students and guardians not congregate in the hallway if social distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Common areas: When using common areas, social distancing is required between family groups. Users shall sanitize hard surfaces when finished using the provided disinfectant.
  • Masks: In accordance with the city ordinance, masks are required through Sept. 15, 2020. Your student’s teacher will contact you with more information about the mask mandate and your private lesson.
  • Wash your hands: Students and guardians must wash their hands upon entering the facility at the bathroom closest to their studio. After washing their hands, they should go directly to the studio to be admitted by their teacher. Here’s a great video on how to wash hands effectively!
  • Sanitation: Each teacher will sanitize all areas where persons have been during the time the studio was opened and between lessons. OCM’s cleaning service will continue their regular schedule of cleaning the facility, with additional cleaning measures, such as sterilizing door knobs, surfaces, etc. throughout the building, as well as in the studios.
  • Social distancing: Proper social distancing must be maintained in common areas and in the studio. In the case of voice and wind/brass instruments, those in-person lessons will take place in the larger classrooms and gathering spaces.

Return to Work and Lessons In-Person Guidelines

The following guidelines are being implemented to provide further protection for the employees and students at OCM during the COVID-19 pandemic. They supplement previously issued policies and guidelines, and may be subject to modification as conditions require.

Artist-Faculty and Staff:

Any OCM employee who:

  • Has been directly exposed to COVID-19 (Less than 6 feet for 15 minutes with or without a mask, as defined by the CDC) OR
  • Experiences COVID-19 symptoms OR
  • Tests positive for COVID-19

Must notify their supervisor as soon as possible and will be asked to work from home until the guidelines below are met. If the employee has tested positive, they will be asked to assist with contact tracing within the organization. OCM will notify all affected employees if there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the workplace.

If the employee is symptomatic, but has not been tested for COVID-19, OR has tested positive for COVID-19, the employee may return to work if:

  • At least 10 days have passed since symptom onset AND
  • At least 24 hours have passed since resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications AND
  • Other symptoms have improved.

If the employee (or their immediate family member) is NOT symptomatic but has been directly exposed (Less than 6 feet for 15 minutes with or without a mask, as defined by the CDC) to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, the employee may return to work if:

  • They have no symptoms AND
  • They have self-quarantined for 14 days* OR
  • Received a negative Covid-19 test

If a staff member tests positive for COVID-19, OCM may elect to close the office for a period up to 72 hours to allow for deep cleaning. Staff would be expected to work from home. If an Artist-Faculty member tests positive for Covid-19, Artist-Faculty will follow the guidelines above and teach virtually from their home according to the above guidelines. Artist-Faculty will make-up all lessons which are missed following our current policy.

Students and their immediate family members:

Any student (or their immediate family member) who:

  • Has been directly exposed to COVID-19 (Less than 6 feet for 15 minutes with or without a mask, as defined by the CDC) OR
  • Experiences COVID-19 symptoms OR
  • Tests positive for COVID-19

Must notify their teacher as soon as possible. The student will arrange with their teacher for virtual lessons until the guidelines below are met. If the student or their immediate family members have tested positive, they will be asked to assist with contact tracing within the organization and the teacher will notify all families in their studio of the situation. The teacher will not disclose the names of the students or family members who have tested positive for COVID-19.

If the student (or their immediate family member) is symptomatic but has not been tested for COVID-19, OR has tested positive for COVID-19, the student may return to lessons at OCM if:

  • At least 10 days have passed since symptom onset AND
  • At least 24 hours have passed since resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications AND
  • Other symptoms have improved.

When a student (or their immediate family members) tests positive for COVID-19, deep-cleaning procedures will be triggered for the studio where the student attended their lesson. Furthermore, the teacher who has been in close contact with this individual will be instructed to self-quarantine, teaching virtually for a minimum of 14 days.

If the student (or their family member) is NOT symptomatic but has been directly exposed (Less than 6 feet apart for 15 minutes with or without a mask, as defined by the CDC) to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, the student may return to in-person lessons if:

  • They have no symptoms AND
  • They have self-quarantined for 14 days* OR
  • Received a negative Covid-19 test

*Note (from CDC): Recommendations for discontinuing isolation in persons known to be infected with COVID-19 could, in some circumstances, appear to conflict with recommendations on when to discontinue quarantine for persons known to have been exposed to COVID-19. CDC recommends 14 days of quarantine after exposure based on the time it takes to develop illness if infected. Thus, it is possible that a person known to be infected could leave isolation earlier than a person who is quarantined because of the possibility they are infected.

OCM will disclose information about any known positive cases within the school’s staff, faculty, students, and immediate family members after notifying any persons who had direct contact with this individual.

For String Sprouts classes and Onsite Classes:

It is the intention to run classes in-person as much as possible, unless the class is a designated virtual class. Teachers will set-up their "going virtual" plan at the beginning of class and outline the circumstances clearly for when this would be implemented. Protocol for moving a class virtual will vary according to the timing of the exposure in relation to the date of the last class. If someone in the class has tested positive or been directly exposed to someone who has tested positive for Covid, the class will be moved to virtual for a period of 14 days. Teachers will notify the classes about the positive test case without revealing ANY names. Classes will be taught at the regularly scheduled time. No refunds will be given based on whether the class was virtual or in-person due to Covid-related reasons.

MISSED CLASSES
In the event of any student absence, please notify your instructor in advance.

After the second consecutive missed class without notice or contact, the student may be dismissed and the date of the second missed class will be considered the official withdrawal date. All withdrawal policies will be followed.

TARDINESS
Students are encouraged to be on time.  Students who are late for class cannot be guaranteed their full class time.

DISMISSAL
OCM reserves the right to dismiss any student without a refund due to frequent absences, disciplinary problems, overdue tuition payments, and/or noncompliance with the Conservatory's policies.

WITHDRAWAL / REFUND POLICY
Group class tuition payments are due by the invoice due date.  Class tuition is non-refundable after this point, regardless of the reason for withdrawal.  (If a payment plan has been set up in ParentsWeb, the total amount of tuition will still be owed regardless of withdrawal).

  • Location: Set up for your virtual lessons must occur 10 minutes prior to the lesson so students are ready to join the lessons at lesson time. Test equipment prior to the first lesson, and consult with your teacher as needed. Set up for your virtual lesson should be in a common area of your house and if under 19, should have your parents within the vicinity of your lesson. If you are in your bedroom or other private areas of your house, the instructor reserves the right to end the lesson and ask the student to call back after an appropriate set up has been made. 

  • Attire: please wear clothes that you would normally wear in public to school or a lesson. Pajamas are not allowed.  If a student is in their pajamas or other inappropriate clothing, the instructor has the right to end the lesson and ask the student to log back after they have changed clothing.

  • Online Etiquette: Be respectful. Be courteous. Be professional. The rules for etiquette in a virtual lesson are very similar to the etiquette for an in-person lesson.

  • Offensive Group Class Behavior: Offensive behavior of any kind will not be tolerated. Report offensive behavior directly to the instructor via e-mail or by phone. Do not use the message boards in the virtual lesson window for this purpose.

  • Technology requirements: 
    • Broadband or high-speed connection
    • Access to a desktop, laptop or smart phone with a built-in camera and microphone - headphones are suggested for clean audio reception.
    • If on desktop or laptop - a browser, such as Firefox or Chrome, will work with Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts, etc. See zoom’s web client recommendations here.
    • In the event OCM’s technology prevents the lesson from occurring, OCM Artist-Faculty will reschedule the lesson.  In the event the student’s technology is not functional, the lesson will follow OCM’s make-up policy.  

  • Missed Lessons & Make-up Policies: In the event of any student absence, please notify your instructor in advance. If students miss a lesson due to conflicts, travel, or illness, they will receive one makeup lesson per semester in a group setting. If students miss their group makeup lesson, it will not be rescheduled. If a teacher misses a lesson, it will be made up as a private lesson at a mutually agreed upon time. 

  • Purchasing Virtual Lessons: Virtual lessons can be purchased directly at omahacm.org. Invoices may also be emailed upon request. Please note that your payment authorizes only one person to access and participate in the virtual lesson or virtual group class. 

  • Cost: For the 2019-2020 academic year, Lesson Bundles must be purchased in 3 hour increments at $64 per hour. Families may only purchase one three hour Lesson Bundle per student at a time. There is no registration fee.  These lessons must be used before Saturday, August 15, 2020 and are non-refundable.  Lesson Bundles cannot be combined for multiple instruments.

  • Recording: Students are strictly prohibited from recording lessons. Instructors cannot record a session without consent of the student (if over 19) or their guardian. Occasionally recording lessons and classes facilitates the educational nature of our mission. By participating in a group class, you have the option to turn off your video if you do not wish to be recorded. Sharing course content with others or publishing it is strictly prohibited. Should you share your course content with another person, your access to the lesson and all its material may be immediately revoked for violating these policies.

  • Photo Release: You grant and give to Omaha Conservatory of Music [“OCM”] the absolute and irrevocable right and permission with respect to the photographs and video footage that OCM or its agents or employees have taken or will take of you or my child in which he/she may be included with others during virtual lessons. You waive all rights you or your child may have to such photographs and video footage. The Conservatory will not use the student’s full name in relation to any video or photographs obtained during lessons or classes. You understand and acknowledge that since your child’s participation is completely voluntary, neither you nor your child will receive any financial compensation or remuneration for OCM’s use of the photographs or video footage. You hereby relinquish any right that you or your minor child may have to examine or approve the completed product or products or the promotional copy or printed matter that may be used in conjunction therewith or the use to which it may be applied.

Lessons and classes will not be rescheduled and tuition will not be credited in the event of any emergency school closing due to weather or other circumstance beyond the control of the Omaha Conservatory of Music, unless:

  • There are multiple closings on the same day of the week during the year.

For example: 

If there is an emergency school closing on only one Monday during the year, lessons will not be rescheduled for that missed lesson.

  • If there is an emergency school closing that occurs on any subsequent Monday during the year, the subsequent missed lesson (or lessons) will be rescheduled.
  • OCM recommends that make-up lessons be scheduled during the last two weeks of May, prior to scheduling the six summer lessons which are included in the annual tuition.


In the interest of faculty and student safety, the Conservatory follows the Omaha Public Schools weather cancellations and will be officially closed when OPS is closed except for in the event of closure due to sub zero temperatures.  As we do not bus our students, this is not applicable to the Conservatory. Cancellations will be posted on our website, Facebook, and local news stations. For weekend weather cancellations and the most updated information, please check our website and the Conservatory's Facebook page and Twitter feed.

If a student is wanting to change the lesson length after lessons have begun, written (or email) notification must be given to Diane Owens, Education Advisor and Admissions Manager: dianeowens@omahacm.org.  Verbal notice or text message from students or parents cannot be accepted. Families who instigate the change must discuss it with the private instructor prior to submitting written notification to ensure the instructor can accommodate a change. The original lesson length will be maintained for 8 days from written notification to allow for changes in billing and teacher schedules.

There is a $25 withdrawal fee. A student who wishes to withdraw from private lessons must give Diane Owens at least two weeks written notice: dianeowens@omahacm.org. Verbal notice or text message from students, parents or faculty cannot be accepted. The date on which the written withdrawal is received by the Conservatory, not the last date of attendance, will be considered the official date of withdrawal. The student is responsible for payment for the two lessons following the official date of withdrawal and may attend them if he or she chooses.

If a student experiences a serious health issue that prevents them from taking lessons, they have a few options: 

  • Students may withdraw per OCM Withdrawal Policy for the duration of their illness, and OCM will send the teacher a new student in their place. Students may re-enroll during the same Academic Year if their teacher has availability, or else be assigned to another teacher. Should the $25 Withdrawal Fee present a hardship for the student, OCM reserves the right to waive it on a case by case basis.
  • Students may continue to pay tuition during their recovery period, in order to hold a spot on their teacher's roster at the same day/time as current lessons, resuming lessons as soon as possible. Students may also work with their teacher to explore alternative musical explorations, if they are willing and able (focus on theory, or bowings only, or play only the left hand piano part, etc.).

Omaha Conservatory of Music continues its firm commitment to the principle of equal employment opportunity. We provide equal employment opportunity to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, age, sex, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation or any other prohibited basis of discrimination under applicable local, state or federal law. We make employment decisions consistent with this principle of equal opportunity. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment.