Dedicated Dancer Handbook

A guide for parents and students

About this Handbook

For over TWO DECADES the North Shore School of Dance has been a leader in dance education and professional training. Our faculty and staff are committed to providing the finest quality of training in an environment that is nurturing, challenging, and disciplined. Our goal is to educate the mind, body, and soul of each of our students. We believe that our success comes as a result of quality training and passion, by staying true to the traditions of dance as an art form.

At NSSD, we don’t teach them a dance, we teach them how to dance. We believe in education and teaching them skills that will last a lifetime. Our dance classes give each student confidence that instills pride, and a higher self-esteem.

We have created this handbook to offer our dancers and their parents a clear understanding of the commitment and responsibility that is required to train at the North Shore School of Dance. All students and parents are required to abide by the rules, guidelines and regulations outlined within this handbook. It is the responsibility of every parent and dancer to read and understand this handbook.

To The Parent

NSSD relies on a positive atmosphere for our faculty, dancers and their parents. Our program promotes a positive learning experience for all participants. We believe that the dancer’s success depends on the support of their parents or guardians. Your commitment to the process makes an enormous difference; we encourage you to be a supportive part of your child’s dance education.

To The Student

Students are expected to treat North Shore School of Dance staff and peers with respect and a positive attitude. Dance class is not a time for socialization, it is a time for focus, dedication and education. Excessive talking is distracting and disrespectful to the teachers and classmates.

Student Division Full Year Commitment Agreement

All students at NSSD who are enrolled in the Student Division, commit to a full school year of classes. The school year at NSSD begins in August and ends in May. NSSD works on a full-year syllabus within each of its classes, making it imperative for students (and parents) to commit to enrollment for an entire school year.

Class Placement and Evaluations

It is our policy to offer appropriate opportunities and class placement to every student. Each student’s class placement is highly individualized each year. Our decisions regarding each dancer is carefully examined and made with expertise from having years of training and experience. Proper placement ensures the dancer’s safety and will enrich the dancer’s training experience. Final decisions in regards to your child’s dance training and placement will be made by your child’s teachers and the Director. Any questions in regards to your child’s training and placement should be directed to the Director.

Level Requirements

As a student progresses, he or she is required to enroll in multiple classes in the same genre of dance per week. This is imperative for the dancer’s training and well being. Multiple classes a week help reiterate the movement and techniques within the body so that it becomes part of their muscle memory. Dancers not enrolled and participating in the required number of classes tend to progress at a different pace than dancers enrolled in the correct number of classes.

Pointe and Pre-Pointe Work

Students are not considered ready for pointe work until they are at least 12 years old and have been studying classical ballet for three or more years, with a frequency of two or more classes per week. All of this requires careful evaluation on the part of the teacher and Director. Once a dancer is ready, a recommendation letter will be given to each student and a copy will be kept in their student file. No one will be allowed to register for a pointe or pre-pointe class without this letter.

Students who have been recommended for pointe or pre-pointe work should not purchase pointe shoes until notified by their teacher. Students should expect to begin the first year of pointe training in ballet shoes.

Student Division Dress Code

Ballet: Black or dark colored leotard, pink tights, pink ballet shoes. Hair in a bun. Alignment belt required.
Men and Boys: White t-shirt, black tights, black ballet shoes.

Jazz: Solid color leotard and jazz pants, or capri’s. Jazz shoes

Modern and Bollywood: Solid color leotard and tights or jazz pants, or unitard. Bare feet.

Tap:
Children: Leotard and jazz pants, low heeled tap shoes.
Boys: Comfortable clothing, jazz or oxford taps.
Women & Girls 12+ Leotard & tights or jazz pants, jazz taps preferred.

Hip-Hop: Light weight T-shirt or camisole and jazz pants. Jazz sneakers or jazz shoes.

FOR THE DANCERS HEALTH AND SAFETY, NO OUTSIDE SHOES PERMITTED FOR USE IN A DANCE CLASS. NO EXCEPTIONS. DANCE SHOES ARE NOT TO BE WORN OUTSIDE.

Attendance

We request that absences be reported to the office prior to class time. If an absence is not reported it will be considered unexcused. The dancer’s presence at all classes is imperative. The spirit of teamwork and the lesson of dedication are a big part of our school’s educational process.

Good attendance is critical to consistent progress and advancement. Students missing an excessive amount of classes during the year will not advance. We encourage each child to make up any missed classes. No student is permitted to make up in a class more advanced than their registered class.

Students entering class ten minutes late will be asked to observe class for that day. Injuries can result when a student has not had a proper warm up.

Injuries, Illness & Allergies

Please inform your instructor of any health problems your child may have. Your signature on the registration form is certification of your child’s ability to participate in his/her dance class. Please inform your child’s instructor of any previous injuries of physical limitations.

Students who are injured and unable to participate are asked to come and observe class. Observing class is important to the development of the students dance education. Once a student has stopped participating in class they may not resume class at any point.

Students must be fever free for at least 24 hours before they are allowed to return to their scheduled class.

Due to the number of nut allergies in our students, NSSD is a nut free zone. If your child needs a snack between multiple classes, please provide them with a healthy alternative. As a reminder, there is no eating in any of the dressing rooms or studios.

Class Cancellations

Classes are ALWAYS held on President’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Columbus Day, and Pulaski Day. We are open during School Institute Days, unless it is a scheduled holiday at NSSD. Please check your local television station (ECC registered) or the website for school closings due to weather.

School Etiquette

  • Please turn off all cell phones when entering NSSD.
  • All waiting areas must be kept quiet.
  • No running in the hallways.
  • No cell phones in the studios.

NSSD Correspondence

Due to changes in the postal service, copies of all NSSD mailings will be available at www.northshoredance.com to download. This includes, but is not limited to, all forms, brochures, and packets. Limited paper copies will be available upon request. All inquiries should be directed to nssdance@aol.com.

As a reminder, all statements, confirmations, and class information, will be emailed to the registered email address. Please update your email address as needed.

Parents must be prompt when picking up their child or carpool. Please call the office if you are running late. After an initial warning, parents that are repeatedly late will be charged at a fee of $15.00 per 15 minutes

Cancellation Policy

North Shore School of Dance reserves the right to cancel any program due to lack of enrollment. Students will be emailed no later than 1 week prior to the start of any class or 2 weeks prior to the start of camp. In special circumstances where a student needs to drop, the parent must send a letter to be reviewed by the Director. Requests are only considered from date received. Letters are accepted by regular mail, email, or in person.

Fall Class Refund and Credit Policy

  • $50.00 drop fee per class prior to the start of classes
  • September: $25.00 per class held plus $50.00 drop fee per class. Balance refunded.
  • October: $25.00 per class held plus $50.00 drop fee per class. Credit on account.
  • Withdraw after October 31, NO CREDIT will be given
  • Classes added after October 31st will not be credited for withdrawel
  • The registration fee is non-refundable.
  • You will be responsible for any unpaid balance after credit is applied.
  • Tuition credit is kept on family account for 1 year and is not transferable.
  • Doctor’s note must be submitted for all medical problems.

Unlimited Payment Plan

$2000.00 deposit plus $600.00 September-May

Payment Plans

Payment plans are available based on the number of classes in which you have registered. Credit cards must be on file and kept current. Contact Barb Wowk for your custom payment plan.

Summer Class & Camp Policies

Any summer class or camp refund requested, less registration fee and deposit, will only be issued up until June 1. After that date, there are no refunds. Requests made due to medical problems or family relocations must be submitted in writing. Doctor’s notes required for all medical problems. Students who miss summer class or camp are eligible only to make-up classes within the summer session. Summer class and camp fees are not prorated.

Due to the concentration of the Intensive Program, all intensive study registrations are due no later than 1 month prior to the start date. Students wishing to enroll after the deadline should contact nssdance@aol.com for availability.

Spring Concert Commitment

The Spring Concert is optional; it is the dancer and parent’s decision whether or not to participate. We cannot guarantee that all of a dancer’s classes will be cast in the same show or that siblings will all be cast in the same show. Classes with low participation may not be cast in the show at all. All accounts must be paid in full in order to participate in the Spring Concert, NO EXCEPTIONS. Any registrations received after the December cutoff date will not be guaranteed a costume or participation in the Spring Concert. After Spring Break, students are not permitted to miss more than 1 class in order to participate in the Spring Concert. No refunds or credits will be given if a student is asked not to participate due to lack of attendance or is unable to participate for any reason.

Parent Observation

Parent observation occurs at two specific times throughout the year. The dates for parent observation are posted on the bulletin boards and are located in the fall brochure. Please plan to stay for the entire class period. No flash photography is permitted. All cell-phones and pagers must be turned to silent or turned off. Show your dancer support by giving them your full attention and encouragement; show your dancer (s) what it is to be a good audience, as you set the best example.

Observation is only permitted at designated times. Prospective students and special cases must be approved by the instructor and Director no later than 1 week prior. The training process is sensitive; your presence may distract or inhibit other students. Viewing windows are available in most studios; however, if the class seems distracted by the window, the curtains will be closed.

Lost and Found

Items left in the studio, dressing room, or hallways will be collected and placed in the lost and found located in the dressing room. We encourage all students to write their name or initials in all of their belongings.

North Shore School of Dance is not responsible for lost or stolen articles. Students are encouraged not to leave valuable items in the dressing room unattended. North Shore School of Dance does not tolerate theft in any way.

Birthday Parties

Private birthday parties for ages 3 and up are available at North Shore School of Dance. Birthday parties are 1 and 1/2 hours long: 45 minutes for instruction and 45 minutes of celebration. You can choose from a variety of themes, including a special birthday party with Kasper, owner of MONSTER’S ENTERTAINMENT. Contact nssdance@aol.com for studio availability.

Privacy

The front office staff are not allowed to give out student or teacher class information, phone numbers, email addresses or home addresses. Therefore, we ask that phone numbers be exchanged on an individual basis.

Audition Photos

All audition photos and/or videos must be pre-arranged through the office and director at least 24 hours prior. Please contact the office to inquire about studio availability and fees.