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Orchestra Independent Study to Receive BHS Fine Arts Credit.

Due to the amazing and assiduous work of parent extraordinaire, Joy Tappen, the BIYO has finally been approved to receive BHS Fine Arts credits - starting NEXT semester. The orchestra is thrilled to have this option available to our musicians -- I know that my girls would have enjoyed the opportunity to leverage this time to fulfill their arts credit.  Here is Joy's communication in entirety:

Interested students are to contact their BHS guidance counselor to request adding this course.  (Guidance counselors:  A-C Adam Ward [email protected]; D-H Nicole Wescott [email protected]; I-Mc Krista Pal [email protected]; Me-R Lauren D'Amico [email protected]; S-Z Cara Tebo [email protected]; this information is also available at

Once it has been approved they will be connected with EHHS which will be overseeing the course.  Tricia Corsetti has asked that in addition to contacting their guidance counselor, prospective students also email her concurrently so that she can begin to track and organize the class ([email protected]).  She will be the primary contact for this course, and will meet with the students at the outset to go through the paperwork and Google doc.

Expected participation is 5 hours/week (~90 hours/semester) which the students will log in a Google doc.  This can comprise rehearsal time, private lessons, private practice, concerts, etc). Grading is based on participation & growth.  Students will communicate weekly with Susan Tolley (music teacher at EHHS; [email protected]) who will be overseeing and grading the course in conjunction with feedback from the Mentor (Tigran).  If there are enough students interested in this course, Susan can set up a Google Classroom, and possibly meet with the students altogether.  Recordings or attending rehearsals/concerts may be other ways that Susan can assess student progress.  The grading rubric has yet to be worked out between Tricia & Susan (FYI Tricia said no need for a project or essay), but if the students are motivated I don't think they will have bad outcomes.  I also met briefly with Susan today and she is very supportive of these students and looks forward to working with them.

I'm attaching a number of forms I scanned just to give you a general overview of what is involved:  1) the Mentor's Evaluation which Tigran would submit (one per registered student), 2) the Expectations and Agreements for EHHS Independent Study Contracts and 3) a printout of a sample Independent Study Contract  (Note: These forms will be posted to the website under Other, Member Information).
One detail which we've not yet addressed is that the BIYO "semester" does not quite overlap the BHS semester.  I don't imagine the students will have trouble filling their log hours with private practice, but if the final concert being in May leaves things too open-ended, we could ask students to ask their private music teachers to serve as their "mentors" to oversee the remaining time.  I don't know that this will be necessary, but these are details we can work out with Susan once we have a better idea of class enrollment.
I've tried to include as much pertinent information as I can think of for Christine to include on the website/communication.  Another couple of contacts that Tricia suggested might be helpful to have are the EHHS guidance counselor, Ann Brandner [email protected], and registrar Jennifer Tuchel [email protected].  I think the course is still a work in progress, and we'll clarify details as we go along, but for now I'm glad that we have this credit option for our students!

Many thanks to Joy for this incredible opportunity.  I know this will be valuable to our hard working student musicians!



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