What makes the TMS preschool and full-day school unique?
The Music Settlement, Center for Early Childhood was founded in 1955 with the idea of providing a quality preschool experience with a commitment to the Arts. Children involved in our program participate in regularly scheduled Dalcroze classes, which introduce children to musical concepts and theory through a variety of movement activities. Pre-Kindergarten students are also involved in a six week Orff experience which encourages music composition and provides ensemble experience through the playing of pitched and unpitched percussive instruments. Both classes are taught by a music educator. Drama is another creative component that Pre-K, K, and Day School classes experience. Children participate in weekly drama classes, where they have an opportunity to discover their creative potential using elements of storytelling and movement. In class they explore self-expression through familiar tales and original works. Another unique feature of our school is the Science program. In addition to the science experiences, which occur daily in each classroom, children are provided the opportunity to explore science concepts in a dedicated Science Room (Discovery Room) guided by a science teacher. Another unique resource to our program is our Library. Classes regularly visit our Library to participate in stories, songs and poems with our storyteller. Our Center for Early Childhood is enhanced by our accessibility to the University Circle community and by the strong involvement of our parents.
What is your policy on separation?
Each child is an individual and, depending on your child’s and your family’s needs, we address each transition individually. If your child needs you to stay, then please stay. You may then slowly withdraw to the doorway, the hallway, down the hallway, etc. We feel it is very important and fundamental that you and your child feel comfortable and secure in making the transition from home to school.
How can I be involved in my child's school experience?
The Music Settlement staff recognizes that the parent/guardian is the child's most important caregiver. The parent/teacher relationship should be that of a cooperative partnership working for the fullest benefit of the child. Parents are encouraged to be active in their child's experience through visitations, social functions, daily communication, classroom participation, parent functions at night, and participation in The Music Settlement Parent Committee. The Parent Committee has meetings on developmental topics, supporting our community and opportunities to volunteer your time and talents for the betterment of The Music Settlement Early Childhood programs. Parents are welcome to visit the school at any time your child is in attendance. We believe our parent’s involvement to be one of the strengths of our school and welcome you to join us.
Are there any other expenses during the year besides tuition?
At the beginning of the year there is a one-time Activity Fee assessed by the Parent Committee. This fee varies according to the child’s program. The activity fee pays for:
- School pictures (individual and class)
- Speech and Hearing and Vision screenings
- Special performances (music, puppet, storytelling)
- Art experiences (in addition to those included in daily curriculum)
- Classroom allowances for special projects
- Guest Artist visits
- ELI (Pre-K students only - monthly field trips) (Early Learning Initiative - program coordinated by University Circle Incorporated) Admission fees to the cultural institutions
- Transportation costs to/from the institutions
Which accreditations does the school maintain?
Step Up To Quality (SUTQ) is a voluntary rating system for early care and education centers in Ohio. SUTQ was created by the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services - Bureau of Child Care and Development to improve the quality of child care in Ohio. Participating centers earn a one to five-star rating by meeting an extensive list of quality benchmarks that exceed licensing standards. Experts say these benchmarks improve the growth and development potential of children. These benchmarks include low child-to-staff ratios, group size, accreditation, staff education, specialized training, improved workplace characteristics and early learning standards. SUTQ assists parents in making more informed choices on behalf of their children in center-based programs licensed by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. Visit www.stepuptoquality.org
Universal Pre-Kindergarten (UPK), unique to Cuyahoga County, was initiated in 2007, and makes high quality early care and education more affordable for families. All UPK sites licensed by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) must be enrolled in Step Up To Quality and meet a series of standards, proven through vast research to be the hallmarks of quality that result in improved school readiness. These standards include teacher qualifications, formal assessment, lower staff to child ratios, use of approved curricula, engagement of families, and family linkages to necessary supportive services.
PRE4CLE, PRE4CLE is Cleveland’s plan to expand access to high-quality preschool in community-based and school-based Pre- Kindergarten programs for Cleveland families who are seeking an excellent preschool experience for their children. PRE4CLE’s success will fulfill a key goal of the Cleveland Plan, a plan to ensure that every child in Cleveland attends a high-quality school and that every neighborhood has a multitude of great schools from which families can choose. PRE4CLE embraces the vision that every child in Cleveland will enter kindergarten ready to succeed in school. Visit http://pre4cle.org
Tell me about your Kindergarten!
Kindergarten is an option for children turning 5 years old by September 30 or those tested for early enrollment by their home school district. After completing TMS Kindergarten, students may enroll in first grade or kindergarten in their home districts or the school of their choice. Kindergarten is held mid-August through late May/early June, five days/week, 8:45 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Aftercare will be exclusive to Kindergarten students, Monday through Friday, 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Registration for Aftercare will take place in the Spring. The cost for Aftercare is $500 for each day enrolled for the year and parents have flexibility to sign up for select days, or all aftercare days.
Does The Music Settlement offer dance classes?
Yes! We offer both Dalcroze Eurythmics and modern-dance. Our modern-dance classes are led by members of Inlet Dance Theatre, our dance theatre in residence. For more information about dance and movement lessons at TMS, please visit: http://www.themusicsettlement.org/early-childhood-preschool/offerings/inlet-dance
How long is your waiting list?
Length is not really the issue for the waiting list. People move up on the waiting list based on the date we received their completed intake (click on this to go to intake) materials. Also, the more availability and flexibility you can provide us in terms of when we might be able to schedule your music therapy sessions, the sooner you might be able to be placed and begin participating in our programs.
Due to the fact that we place individuals in music therapy sessions based upon availability for the particular days and times which become open in our schedule, the length of our waiting list is not the most important factor to consider. Please provide us with as many scheduling options on your Intake Form (INCLUDE LINK TO FORM) as you possibly can in order to have the best chance of receiving a call for scheduling. Those who provide very limited options for scheduling (e.g. only Wednesdays starting at 5:00 p.m.) will most certainly wait longer for a scheduling phone call/e-mail than those who document greater flexibility. You may also want to consider the fact that weekday sessions which occur in the morning or early in the afternoon (between Noon and 4:00 p.m.) are less desirable for most individuals than weekday sessions starting at 4:00 p.m. Therefore, if you are available during the morning or early afternoon, your chances of receiving a scheduling call may be increased. Our best advice to you regarding the wait list is to give us your widest possible availability of days and start times. As well, please don’t forget to call or e-mail if your schedule changes!
Music therapy is so expensive. We can’t afford it…
Income-based Financial Aid and other funding awards are available to all qualified applicants. Assistance is provided for individuals and families who wish to apply for third party funding (e.g. Autism Scholarship, various County Boards of Developmental Disabilities, foundations, trusts or other sources of income). We are available to advise and assist you in gaining information and support to finance music therapy services. If you are experiencing challenges in your household budget, or if the individual you are responsible for has a very low income, we will be happy to discuss your options. All personal and financial information is held in the strictest confidence.
The Music Settlement is in a unique position to provide not only income-based financial assistance, but also additional assistance, as we understand that people with special needs generally incur expenses above and beyond the norm that can tax even a generous income. In cases such as these, we will work with families on a case-by-case basis to ensure that Music Therapy remains accessible.
I don’t want individual music therapy. I want a music therapy group for my loved one.
We typically offer groups in two ways. (a) Music therapy groups are built with the needs of specific music therapy clients in mind. We generally need to get to know a new client and build rapport in an individual music therapy setting first before placing them in a group. We will, upon occasion and in regard to the appropriateness of the referrals, build music therapy groups for new clients, or parents and children together. (b) We also offer specialty courses with specific content or outcomes, such as our Saturday Jam and Musical Revue courses. Our music therapy staff will discuss prerequisite skills with you and may arrange a visit to determine whether such a group might be a good “fit” for the potential client.
When are your programming periods?
Our fall/spring programs begin in early September and end mid-June; our six-week summer program begins the final week in June. However, please be aware that music therapy sessions may become available at any time throughout the year! Openings occur in our schedules for a variety of reasons, and placement is a highly individualized process.
What's the enrollment process?
The first step in the intake and enrollment process is to get your name, your family member’s name, or the individual you are responsible for onto our waiting list. This is accomplished by sending us a completed Intake Form (link to Intake Form). Although we have a 36-week school year session and a 6-week summer session, we often have openings in our schedule which occur at any time during the year. We schedule new registrants based upon the date we receive the completed Intake Form, documented information regarding preferred days and start times, and therapist experience related to the individual’s diagnosis, needs, and abilities. When we call or e-mail you to offer a session, you will be given a limited window in which to respond, often between 1 to three days. Please be ready to respond at your earliest convenience, as we will move on to another individual on the wait list if we do not hear from you by the deadline you are given. Once you accept an offer of a day and time within our schedule and a plan for financing music therapy services has been developed, an assessment date and time will be scheduled. Therapeutic programming and finalized decisions for music therapy services are determined after an assessment is conducted. The assessment provides an evaluation of the strengths and needs of the individual as observed in the music therapy setting and collected in the intake process. An initial treatment plan with selected therapeutic targets for ongoing music therapy sessions is begun at this time. Music Therapy sessions will generally start two weeks after the assessment has been concluded, so that the Assessment and Initial Treatment Plan may be developed and written.
What information do I need to provide to you?
Please send us a copy of the individual’s current IEP, IHP, or IFSP, if applicable. The intake includes client, parent/guardian contact information; general client details, such as date of birth, school or work placement; listing of other therapists the individual sees; diagnosis (if any) and any medical concerns; the individual’s skills in social, academic/cognitive, emotional, communication, motor, and sensory domains; any safety precautions; musical skills and interest; any funding sources (and pertinent contact information) which you will be utilizing toward music therapy; and the individual’s availability to attend sessions (days of the week/times). Should a spot become available, you will need to complete a short registration form and, if applying for Financial Aid, you will need to complete our financial aid form and provide proof of income (copies of form 1040, 1040ZE or 1040A, AFDC, SSI or unemployment information).
Do you take medical insurance?
You will need to contact your insurance provider to determine if music therapy is covered in your plan. If it is, we are happy to work with your provider to send assessment and initial treatment plan information.
Do you take any 3rd party reimbursement?
Yes we do! We have a great deal of experience in working with third parties for support of music therapy services. We can provide assistance for individuals and families who wish to apply for third party funding (e.g. Autism Scholarship, various County Boards of Developmental Disabilities, foundations, trusts or other sources of income).
Who can benefit from music therapy?
Children and adults facing a wide range of life’s challenges may be positively impacted by participation in music therapy. Infants through senior citizens may all be appropriate candidates. Music therapy may assist individuals with disabilities, those who are at-risk, or those with medical issues. Music therapy may also be utilized to address wellness. We serve individuals with a diverse array of strengths and needs. Autism and other developmental disabilities, mental health issues, physical disabilities, and learning disabilities are only some of the more common diagnoses of our constituents. If you are not sure as to whether we can serve an individual’s needs, just ask. Our therapists offer a wide variety of expertise.
May I request a specific music therapist?
Once clients begin music therapy services within the Center for Music Therapy, we make every effort to have them continue with the same therapist, unless a schedule change prevents us from doing so. In most cases, we cannot place new clients with a specific music therapist. Each music therapist has a unique schedule, tailor-made to accommodate the clients here and the outreach agencies served. We pride ourselves on hiring only the best and most qualified music therapists. All music therapists have completed an approved music therapy education and training program. All are Board Certified within the first year of their employment and all continue to be recertified, with ongoing participation in our Center’s and other professional development and continuing education opportunities. All music therapists are supervised by the Chair or Assistant Chair of our Center, and the entire staff provides informal networking opportunities with one another, which can only enhance the experiences of our clients.
What is the philosophy of the Center for Music Therapy at The Music Settlement?
• It is the right of everyone to participate in music experiences
o At his/her level
o In the “least restrictive environment”
• Inclusive of all
• Individualized, including consideration of a variety of learning styles and sensory modalities
• Educate/serve the whole child or whole person with active family involvement as appropriate
• The relationship with therapist or educator as well as between members of group/ensemble is paramount in this process
• Individuals with disabilities are not necessarily disabled in music
• Participation in music experiences
o May improve someone’s quality of life
o May help an individual reach his/her personal goals or potential
o Involves learning in layers and has the potential to affect all skill domains (behavioral/psychosocial, language/communication, cognitive, perceptual/motor, physiological, in addition to musical)
• Materials and experiences should be age-appropriate, developmentally appropriate, and culturally appropriate
• The importance of promoting of generalization and transfer of skills learned here to other settings, times, and individuals cannot be overemphasized
• Grounded in evidence-based practices
• Faculty strives to evaluate and show progress for all students/clients
• Interested in advancing the field as well
My family member wants to play an instrument. Can you give lessons in music therapy?
Yes, adapted music lessons are often a part of music therapy sessions. Our music therapists are trained to make accommodations and modifications to assist individuals in becoming as successful and independent as possible in developing their musical skills, which may include singing, playing various musical instruments, or composing. Clients who show particular skill in music learning, performance, or composition can benefit from the close relationships amongst the Settlement’s three Centers. Co-teaching with Center for Music faculty or a planned transfer to a Center for Music faculty member from a Center for Music Therapy therapist are two examples of The Music Settlement advantage for the musician with special needs.
How can I be involved in my child's experience?
The Music Settlement staff recognizes that the parent/guardian is the child's most important caregiver. The parent/teacher relationship should be that of a cooperative partnership working for the fullest benefit of the child. Parents are encouraged to be active in their child's experience through visitations, social functions, daily communication, classroom participation, parent functions at night, and participation in The Music Settlement Parent Committee. The Parent Committee has meetings on developmental topics, supporting our community and opportunities to volunteer your time and talents for the betterment of The Music Settlement programs. Parents are welcome to visit the school at any time your child is in attendance. We believe our parent’s involvement to be one of the strengths of our school and welcome you to join us.
Do you offer financial aid?
Yes! We offer need-based financial aid for all of our programs and Centers. To apply, you need to submit a completed financial-aid form along with proof of income.
Do you accept donations of musical instruments?
We do occasionally accept donations of musical instruments. All donations of this type are coordinated through the Center for Music. If you would like to inquire about donating a musical instrument, contact Megan Constantine at 216-421-5806 xt. 184 or Linda Allen at 216-421-5806 xt. 109.
How much do private lessons cost?
Private lessons start at $30 per half hour. This could be more, depending upon the instrument, instructor, or pedagogy (for example, Suzuki private lessons cost more). For those who want to take voice lessons, there may be an extra accompanist fee.
Can I pay for lessons weekly as I go?
Because you are committing to the current school year when you register for private lessons, a registration fee and down payment are required with remaining tuition billed monthly. You can discontinue during the school year, however, by submitting 4 weeks written notice to the business office. You can also purchase a single trial lesson with a teacher before registering for the entire school year.
What makes up a typical day for TMS Preschoolers and Day Schoolers?
A typical day is made up of the following components although each classroom's routines vary due to the times they are scheduled for specials such as music, drama, library, Chinese and science.
Group Times: A minimum of two a day. One is early to gather to say hello and to discuss the day's activities, calendar and weather. The other opportunities throughout the day to gather to read a story, sing songs or do finger plays.
Free Choice Time: A large part of the day is devoted to children choosing various learning centers to engage in play. These include areas such as language, writing, dramatic play, manipulatives, blocks, science and art. Small group, teacher directed activities are also offered at this time.
Snack: Juice and a basic snack are generally served except on special days such as birthdays or holidays.
Large Muscle Activity: Children go outside on the playground daily, weather permitting. The Large Muscle Room may be used on inclement days.
What is the general education background of your staff?
Our teaching staff meets educational standards as established by the Ohio Department of Human Services and aligned to accreditation guidelines of Step Up to Quality and Universal Pre-Kindergarten, with a majority of staff holding a Bachelor's or Master's degree in Education or related fields. As per state licensing requirements, our staff is also trained in First Aid, CPR, Child Abuse Recognition, and Communicable Disease Prevention. Staff annually attends in-service training and workshops, observe other early childhood programs, and access our professional library. Staff turnover is very low; the average tenure of our dedicated staff is 8 years.
How do you discipline your students?
The Center for Early Childhood's philosophy regarding discipline is one of guidance. A part of the early childhood school experience is to help children understand what behaviors and activities are appropriate and acceptable. This is done by communicating feelings, problem solving and encouraging cooperation. Redirection to another activity for a short time or a one on one activity with a teacher may be used when a child experiences difficulty during play. Teachers and parents work together to resolve most problems. If more attention is needed, we are fortunate to have support from a consulting psychologist. We have trained in Conscious Discipline as a guidance style in the classrooms.
Do you believe in and provide for multicultural experiences for children?
The Center for Early Childhood is proud of the diverse backgrounds of the children participating in our school programs. It is in keeping with our educational goals to expose the children to this diversity through discussion, dance, music, stories, cooking, art, etc. We also invite and encourage parent participation.
What are the hours for your main front office?
Our Enrollment and Customer Service (ECS) Office Hours are as follows:
Monday: 9am - 5pm
Tuesday: 9am - 7pm
Wednesday: 9am - 7pm
Thursday: 9am - 7pm
Friday: 10am - 6pm
Saturday: 9am - 4pm
(These hours are subject to change in the summer months, or due to staffing issues due to illness or vacation.)
Who was Almeda Adams?
Almeda Adams, founder of The Music Settlement, will always be remembered for her interest in assisting the underserved and a desire to bring culture to the lives of Clevelanders in 1912. Ms. Adams, who lost her sight at six-months old, became a competent instructor of voice and piano. She was first attracted to the idea of founding a music Settlement in Cleveland after her father read an article to her regarding the New York City Settlement house. Ms. Adams scheduled a trip to New York City to visit the house for herself; it was after this visit that she dreamt of the possibility of such an establishment in Cleveland.
She shared her interest with members of The Fortnightly Music Club which included many prominent Clevelanders, and the idea sparked intense interest by the members of Club. A committee was formed and worked expeditiously and on April 25, 1912, The Cleveland Music School Settlement was legally incorporated.
What instruments and styles are taught at The Music Settlement?
We offer private instruction across a variety of instrumental styles. From violin to percussion, we offer something for any age and any ability level.
Music instruction at The Music Settlement provides a basis for a lifetime of learning and musical enjoyment. Enrolling in private or group lessons, playing in an ensemble, or participating in a music history and literature course provides options for various levels of involvement. Music instruction is available Monday through Saturday - see what courses interest you!