Studio Policy

Piano Tuition and Fees

Monthly Tuition Rates:
$150 a month for 30 minute lessons 
$185 a month for 45 minute lessons (CM level 4+)
$220 a month for 1 hour lessons (CM level Advanced, optional for CM levels 8-9)

Tuition for the 2019-2020 year (August 2019 - June 2020) includes the following: 

  • 41 private lessons
  • 6 performance classes
  • 2 studio recitals 
  • Christmas nursing home performance
  • 2 theory/ear-training workshops
  • Holly Franz's time and investment both in and outside of lessons
Monthly tuition rates remain the same each month regardless of the number of private lessons or performance classes in a month. Tuition is due the first lesson of each month. There are no lessons in July and no tuition payment is due in July. The late fee is $15 for tuition received after the 15th of the month. Tuition payments are not on a per-lesson basis. There is no transfer of tuition from one month to another or a reduction in monthly tuition due to missed private lessons, classes, or recitals. Additional fees associated with programs such as Certificate of Merit, festivals, and competitions will be charged for students participating in such events. Fees must be paid before a student can be registered. 

Missed Lessons

Missed performance classes, workshops, or recitals cannot be made up. If you need to miss a private lesson please notify me before 9 AM the day before the missed lesson in order to schedule a make up lesson on the next available make up day. You have 6 weeks to make up a missed lesson. Students should not attend lessons if they are sick. If a student is contagious but feels well enough for a lesson, we can do the lesson on an iPad via FaceTime. Call ahead of time to set that up. (Skype won’t work due to the delay.)

Punctuality and Responsibility   

Students need to arrive on time to lessons and must be picked up on time. If arriving early, students will wait outside and then may enter when it is their lesson time so as not to disrupt another student’s lesson. Students should bring all of the required books and materials to every lesson and double check to make sure they have all their materials before coming to their lesson.

Studio Cancellations

30 days notice is required if a student decides to discontinue lessons.     

Studio Rules

Please leave shoes outside and wash hands before sitting at the piano. No food or gum are allowed in the studio. Nails need to be trimmed short.

Required Materials

  • acoustic piano for daily practice, which is in good repair and tuned regularly (at least annually)
  • metronome
  • 3-ring binder for lesson assignments
  • music bag to keep all materials, books, flashcards, etc.
  • books (typically books are purchased by the teacher and reimbursed by the parent/student)  

Practice Expectations

Minimum practice expectations
ages 5-9, begin with 30 minutes a day
ages 10-12, increase to 45 minutes a day
ages 13-15, increase to 1 hour a day
ages 16-18, increase to 1 1/2 hours a day

Practice expectations for competitive students
ages 5-7, 30+ minutes a day
ages 8-9, 45+ minutes a day
ages 10-12, 1+ hour a day
ages 13-14, 1 1/2+ hours a day
ages 15-18, 2 to 4 hours a day depending on repertoire

Students are expected to come to their lessons with all assignments completed. They are required to fill out a daily practice log. Students should practice 6 days a week. A regular daily practice schedule will ensure long-lasting habits and steady progress. I will suggest the amount each student should practice depending upon their level and capabilities. Students receive music money for achieving their practice goals each week. Parents are required to provide a quiet, focused atmosphere for their child. Students should follow the practice instructions carefully, completing any assigned charts, for each song as outlined in the notebook. Parents should monitor practicing and see that assignments are completed. Students not meeting the minimum expectations will be dismissed from the studio.


Music money is awarded to students who are excelling, meeting certain requirements, and demonstrating particular achievements. The “Piano Store” will be open at performance classes for students to purchase merchandise with their music money. 


Students are expected to attend and participate in studio performance classes, workshops, and recitals. In addition, there may be several other performance opportunities throughout the year such as school talent shows, piano festivals, and competitions. Students are enrolled in these additional events when I am convinced they are well prepared, with the expectation that the performance opportunity will be a positive experience.

Certificate of Merit

For students participating in Certificate of Merit, registration must be completed online by October 30th and payment must be made by the parent between November 1-10. 

Music Challenges

Every August, new challenges are presented for students to work on throughout the year. Because this is an olympic year, our annual challenge will be the Piano Olympics. The Piano Olympics challenge will be explained in detail at the August performance class. 

Concert Attendance 

Students are encouraged to attend public concerts and/or recitals at least twice a year. Listening and watching good performers is an excellent educational opportunity and should be planned with regularity. To find performances, start by checking the concert schedules for the San Diego Symphony, the La Jolla Music Society, California Center for the Arts Escondido, and the UCSD Department of Music (where most concerts are free).

Student Dismissal

At the teacher’s discretion, any student who repeatedly ignores one or more of the studio requirements such as daily practice, getting practice charts signed, etc. will be dropped from the studio. 

Student, Teacher, Parent Relationships

I believe in maintaining mutual respect between the parent and the teacher. I will work hard to develop the type of relationship with each student that will make him feel encouraged, motivated, and inspired. Open and honest communication between myself and the parents is essential.

Success in piano study is directly related to parental support and involvement. Parents are invited and encouraged to attend the private lessons. Whether or not you have a musical background, parents should come in for at least one lesson a month. Parent attendance at a lesson usually produces better practice at home. Although performance classes and workshops are for students only, parents are welcome and encouraged to attend recitals as well as observe festivals and competitions that are in a recital format. 

I encourage parents to develop a healthy and positive relationship regarding their child's daily practice regime. Parents should think of creative incentives and rewards for their child's hard, consistent work. They should be cheerleaders for their children. Practicing can be tricky and frustrating for the student at times. Keeping the experience positive and uplifting will make for much more effective progress.