My Studio Policies

Thank you for choosing me as your piano teacher! In order to ensure that you or your child receive the most effective and creative teaching possible, I have established the following policies.

Feel free to email me at anytime

about what is happening or to ask questions. I love hearing from you!

 Any payment, in any form, for lessons and/or books to Miss Darlene's Piano constitutes acceptance of these policies. 

Student Commitment

Regular practice is imperative to learn how to play proficiently. I give each student an appropriate practice time based upon their age and ability.

Studio Ediquette

My music studio is designed to create a comfortable learning area for my students. During a student’s lesson, please be careful that no one distracts that student. Please use earphones when listening to music, playing a game or watching a video.

Food and drinks are not allowed in the studio or entrance hall unless I provide them.

Students, please leave your shoes in the entrance hall.

Please do not park in my driveway.

During lessons parents are encouraged to stay in the studio. Parents are fully responsible for any children left alone during a sibling’s lesson. I am unable to supervise or be responsible for an unattended child’s activities, especially if they leave. 

Children who are not one of my students may never be left alone in the studio. There must always be an adult family member present with them.

Lesson Schedules

Lessons Missed by Students

Please notify me as early as possible if a student will be missing their lessons. The best way to notify me is by email to  Your make-up lesson is NOT scheduled until I confirm it by email and you see it on the calendar.

Please, DO NOT SEND TEXT MESSAGES as I cannot receive them or respond to them.

Students do not receive credits for lessons they miss and make–ups for missed lessons are not guaranteed.

How to Schedule a Make–up for Your Missed Lesson

My web site includes my studio calendar — click on “Studio Calendar” above. Here you will see lesson times for all of my students and any available make–up lesson times. To request one of the make–up lesson times, please click on one of the "Contact Miss Darlene" buttons or send your request by email to me at  

Make–up lessons are available on a first–come basis but must be close to the missed lesson. Please do not try to make lesson schedule changes during lessons as this is almost impossible to do at that time. 

Lessons Cancelled by Miss Darlene

If it is necessary for me to cancel a scheduled lesson, then the student will either receive a make–up lesson or a 25% credit on their next monthly tuition for each lesson I cancel. 

Labor Day and Memorial Day Holidays

Memorial Day is always the last Monday of May and Labor Day is always the first Monday of September. On these two days, unless my Studio is already taking a week–long break at that time, there will be no lessons. 

Monthly tuition will be reduced 25% for May or September for those students with Monday lessons.

Summer Lessons

Students are expected to continue lessons in the summer months. It is my experience that when students take a long break from piano, their skills, practice habits, and hand muscle memory decreases. Then when students return in the fall, I have to review old materials and re–establish good piano skills and technique again.  

Long and Short Breaks

Studio Schedule

My Studio Schedule includes six weeks with no lessons. There will be no make–up lessons for these weeks.

  • The week of July 4th (Independence Day)
  • The week of Thanksgiving (4th Thursday in November)
  • The week of December 25th (Christmas Day)
  • The week of New Year’s Day (January 1st)
  • Two additional weeks sometime during the year. Normally you will be notified ahead of time but in case of an emergency, I will send an email to all students.

Note: When a holiday begins on Sunday, the “no lesson week” will be the week prior to the holiday. For example, in 2016 Christmas is on Sunday so there will be no lessons the week immediately prior to Christmas.  

Tuition and Payments

Lesson Tuition

My lesson tuition is based on students receiving 46 lessons during a 12–month period. The annual tuition amount is equally divided into 12 equal monthly payments. Consequently, the monthly amount remains the same each month, regardless of the number of lessons during that month.

Please click on the button below for a further explanation of my lesson tuition. 

What Does Your Piano Tuition Pay For?

Tuition Payment Schedule

Students or parents will receive an emailed reminder near the end of each month for the tuition fee due and the charge for any special music purchases. 

Payments must be received no later than the 10th of the month, whether or not the student has a lesson during that time. A $10.00 late fee will be due with all payments received after the 10th of the month.

Please bring your payment to your lesson or mail checks to Darlene Chilson, 1432 Elmhurst Drive, Longmont, CO 80503.

If you bring your payment to a lesson, please give it to Miss Darlene before the lesson begins.

PayPal invoices are available upon request for payment by debit or credit card. An online payment charge will be added to cover PayPal’s processing payment fee.

If payment is not paid by the 18th of the month, I will assume the student has terminated their lessons and no further lessons will be provided and their lesson time and date will become available for another student.

Lesson Books and Materials

Except for the initial set of lesson materials for new students (see New Student Fees below), the ongoing cost of all regular lesson materials is included in the lesson tuition.

Any lost or additional books must be paid for by the student. This includes music for the Spring Recital, the Multiple Piano Festival and any holiday, seasonal, popular or jazz books the student requests. Normally I will order these additional books and add their cost to your monthly tuition fee.

Feel free to bring to your lesson any music you may have at home, buy at a music store or find online. Please let me know if you would like more variety and I can suggest music appropriate for your level of experience.

New Student Fees

Unless new students already have the proper books, there is a one–time, non–refundable fee to cover their initial set of lesson materials. These book fees plus  tuition fees for the remaining lessons in their first month must be paid before a lesson day and time will be reserved and the lesson materials ordered.

Discontinuing Lessons

If a student plans to discontinue lessons, a month’s notice is appreciated. If a student discontinues lessons before the last lesson of the month, there is no refund for unused lessons.

Long and Short Breaks

Short Breaks

Each year I receive requests to hold lesson times for students for various reasons such as sports, camps, vacations, family trips, etc. Normally I cannot hold lesson times that are not paid. If a student wishes to take an unpaid break, their time will be available if another student asks for it. When the student wishes to re–start lessons, they will be offered any available time slot on the schedule.

If you are only going to miss one or two lessons a month, you are ahead to pay the full monthly tuition and schedule make–up lessons.

Long Breaks

One time a year, if you are going to miss more than two lessons a month, you can hold your lesson day and time, for up to two consecutive months, without paying the full monthly piano tuition…    

· Send me an email with at least two weeks’ advance notice of your break

· Tell me the calendar months for your break

· Tell me the exact lesson dates you will come for a lesson and the lesson dates you will be absent

Once I receive your information, I will send you an email invoice for the amount due which will include the following…

· The regular tuition for the month following your break

· 25% of the monthly tuition for each lesson you will receive

You will not be invoiced your regular amount for the months of your break

There will be no refunds or make–up lessons during this time but the paid lessons may be switched if your schedule changes.


You have one piano student and your family is taking a long trip from the middle of June to the middle of July. You want two lessons at the beginning of June before you leave and one lesson the end of July after you return.

To hold your lesson times, notify me before June 1st and before June 10th pay my invoice for 25% of your monthly tuition fee for each for the two June lessons and the one July lesson and your regular August tuition . This will pay you up to September 1st and hold your lesson day and time while you are gone.

Student Recitals

Spring Recital

I hold one student piano recital each year in late April or early May. Participation in this recital is expected and required except for special circumstances. Students are not required to memorize the music. Adult students have the option to not participate.

Multiple Piano Festival

Some of my students also enjoy participating in the Multiple Piano Festival every year. This event is sponsored by the Boulder Area Music Teachers Association and is held the Saturday before Thanksgiving at the Vance Brand Civic Auditorium in Longmont. If you are interested in participating or knowing more about it, please contact me. 


I appreciate it when a student or student’s parent recommends me to a potential student. If that person becomes a student, as a “Thank You” you will receive credit for one 30–minute lesson on your monthly tuition payment once they begin lessons. 

Legal Stuff

Independent Contractor

It is understood that Miss Darlene’s Piano LLC, a Colorado Limited Liability Company, is an independent contractor and that neither it nor Darlene Chilson is an employee of the student or student’s parent.


Parents and legal guardians of minor students and adult students give up the right to any legal action for any injury sustained on the studio property resulting from normal lesson activity or any other activity conducted by students before, during or after a student’s lesson time and hold Darlene Chilson and Miss Darlene’s Piano LLC harmless.

Policy Changes

Miss Darlene’s Piano LLC reserves the right to change these policies at any time. Students and parents will be informed in writing of all changes.


Parents and legal guardians of minor students and adult students give permission for group photographs of students to be posted with no names attached on Miss Darlene’s Studio’s website, the studio’s social media pages and in my studio promotions.