Sierra Olsthoorn Studio Policies and Fees

Sierra’s Studio Policies


Missed Lesson Policy

Make-up lessons or refunds are not offered for any lesson a student/parent misses, regardless of the reason. The student and/or a parent may opt to have an online lesson when they cannot attend in person. Alternatively, a parent may opt to have a phone call meeting during the lesson time or may request an email with a practice plan. Teacher-cancelled lessons will be made up by June 30 at your regular lesson time, or at a prearranged alternative time, during designated makeup lesson weeks. Any lessons not made up in that time will be refunded or moved to summer lessons upon mutual agreement.  


Inclement Weather Days

If Public and Catholic school boards have closed due to inclement weather (not just buses), private lessons will be moved to an online platform. In the case of power outages or internet connectivity issues, lessons will be cancelled and not made up.  In the case of a student-missed lesson due to inclement weather please see missed lesson policy. 


Online Lesson Policy

When lessons occur online; lesson time lost due to poor connectivity, power outages, battery failure, etc. will not be made up. Lesson etiquette still exists for online lessons. Please check your camera and audio settings before each lesson. Please ensure the student’s body, including bow arm, full instrument and instrument hand are visible during the lesson. Arrive on time, prepared with your music, resources and instrument tuned to the best of your ability. Please keep surrounding noise down and other distractions minimal during your online lesson. Your teacher has researched external equipment (webcams, microphones, speakers, etc.) to help provide an optimal learning experience. Please speak with your teacher if you are thinking about upgrading your equipment for online learning. 


Studio Fees

Lesson fees are due on the first week of lessons. In Sierra’s studio, yearly and monthly lesson fees are based on a 31 lesson year @ $56/hour. These lessons will take place between September 1 and June 30. Payments can be equalized into 10 post-dated cheques dated for the 1st of each month submitted to your teacher at the beginning of September, or you may opt to pay two lump sums via Interac transfer on or before September 14, 2020 and January 1, 2021. Please see policies regarding missed lessons or lesson withdrawal for information specific to those issues. School fees for STEW groups will be invoiced separately. There will be a charge of $10 for NSF cheques. Please inform me promptly if your bank information changes.


Hand Washing

Please wash your hands before coming into the studio. This will help keep our studio healthy and your instrument happy! 


Student Illness

Persons entering the studio will be required to confirm they do not have any symptoms of COVID-19 before having an in-person lesson. If a student or member of your household has a fever, has vomited, or has any other symptom of COVID-19 please do not come to your lesson or group class. In lieu of in-person lessons, lessons can take place via Zoom, Facetime, Skype or another online platform. Other options include having a parent-teacher phone call, or as a request an email with a practice plan from your teacher. Student-missed lessons will not be made up or refunded. It is imperative that you refrain from spreading illness through our studio and your teacher’s family. Please see the additional COVID-19 waiver for more information. 


Group Classes

Participation in group classes is mandatory for students 18 years of age and under, unless a high school graduate, if an appropriate class is being offered at a student’s level. People with special needs will be given consideration and included in our program whenever possible. Group activities are an integral part of our Suzuki program.


Arrival at In-Person Lessons 

Please arrive no more than 5 minutes ahead of your lesson. Please wash your hands in the designated studio washroom and then unpack in the waiting area. Please be aware that your teacher needs to allow for transition and sanitization time and that your in-person lesson time includes this preparation in the first and last 5 minutes of your scheduled lesson time. 


Withdrawal from Lessons

Your spot in the violin/viola studio is seen as a one-year commitment of time and financial obligation. Any withdrawal from lessons during the school year requires 30 days written notice. Post-dated cheques will be returned or destroyed after a final calculation of the actual number of lessons received to date, plus one additional month of lessons. Students wishing to withdraw temporarily may maintain their spot in the studio and priority for re-admission by the uninterrupted payment of tuition for both private and STEW fees for the duration of the withdrawal. 


Graduation Recital Costs

Since twinkle and book graduations are an optional event, there may be a small fee to cover costs for trophies and overhead for participants.


Practice and Listening Requirements

Students are asked to regularly practice their instruments as instructed by the teacher. Please speak regularly with your teacher about how to structure and personalize your practice routine. Listening to the Suzuki repertoire recording is integral to Suzuki method learning and is an expected part of your practice routine.



Please park on the street and not in the driveway unless prearranged with your teacher. Please regard posted signs to ensure you are parking on the designated side of the street for city parking.



Please refrain from using perfumes before coming to your lesson. Other students coming to the studio have sensitivities to scent and it impacts their learning. Our studio and waiting areas are tree nut and peanut free. 


Parent Participation

I understand that for students under the age of 13, the designated practice parent is expected to attend and participate in lessons and assist in at home practice. This includes lessons that take place in the online platform. I will speak with my teacher if special circumstances arise. This is an integral part of a Suzuki program.