How it works: The Farrer Band

For many years, Farrer Primary students have enjoyed music tuition through our school's involvement in the Instrumental Music Program.

The Instrumental Music Program (IMP) is a section of the Department of Education and Training which provides our school with a package of services designed to supplement the music education of up to 22 selected students in each of Year 5 and 6. Students involved in this program are part of a system of over 1700 musicians all learning in the same situation in 40 schools across the ACT.

Selection of Students

The identification and selection of band students involves a range of staff. It begins with each Year 4 classroom teacher completing a report to the IMP on a number of selection criteria that are important to beginning music students.

At the beginning of Year 5, IMP staff ask our students to answer some questions about music that is played to them. This is designed to determine each child's ability to hear differences in the sounds of notes, melodies and rhythms and is another of the criteria used in the selection process.

When all of the criteria are assembled the IMP provides a list of students to the Principal who, in conjunction with classroom and band teachers, determines a list of students to whom offers will be made for Band Class membership.

Places are offered first to students who do not already have lessons on a band instrument. More advanced students are welcome to be part of the School Band, but are not part of the IMP band classes.

The families of students who accept membership can expect their child to be part of a class learning concert band instruments. Students in the band class are provided with an instrument (along with its maintenance and repairs of accidental damage), and all of the music required for their tuition. A teacher who is attached to the IMP visits Farrer each week and provides the class with two ¾ hour lessons.

The Commitment

There is a cost of approximately $320 for two years to families of Band Class members. This covers

  • the loan of an instrument,
  • tuition,
  • print music,
  • and transport to performances and band events.

Students involved are required to participate in a weekly practice session at school, which may be outside of school hours. They are also required to sustain a regular home practice schedule.