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2019 BOA San Antonio

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I have to agree there are two things the most successful bands have in common:

1) upper-middle and upper class school district

2) heavy parental involvement


I think there's a point where throwing in more money stops helping, but there's also a point below which you can't get even the basic transportation, equipment, teachers, etc. 


Speaking for the Cedar Park area, it is a pretty wide range.  Definitely it can be quite a burden on some parents, especially younger parents with multiple kids.


I'm going to make a mistake here and add things up...


Private lessons - $800/year, 7 years = $5600

Basic marching fees - $1200/year, 4 years = $4800

Donations and fundraisers - varies considerably, say $500/year, 4 years = $2000

"Nice" instrument - varies considerably, say $1500 

T-shirts - $10 each, 5/year, 4 years = $200

Lifelong friendships, memories, and character building -priceless!


So probably $10k-$15k investment over seven years, about a semester or year of college.  I guess it seemed like more when writing checks for two and three kids.  For some people this is a huge sacrifice, for others it is round-off error in their checking account or the difference between getting the Model 3 or Model S.


Your marching fee is quite a bit higher than what our band charges. There are a few fund rasiers, but those are not targeted at the parents. The money does not go to the kids it individually it goes towards the band as a whole. We are also not required to buy t-shirts for the show those are all optional.  We don't have matching water bottles, holders, or suits. We have a number of folks who don't pay even the basic band fee and if all those totals you listed was required for our program it would not succeed. Most kids rent their instruments. Very few pay for them out right. 


I totally agree with the friendships and memories. No price can be put on that.

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