Frequently Asked Questions

Private Lessons:

1.  How do I sign up for private lessons?

The first step is to pre-register by filling out a Referral Form Online or in person at the CCSM office.  A $20 deposit will be collected in order to complete the referral process. The $20 will be credited to your account and applied towards a one-time new student registration fee for new students, or towards tuition for current students.

Upon receiving your form, we will review your information and match you with an instructor who fits your availability and interests. Your information will be forwarded to the instructor, who will contact you via phone or email within 3-5 days. You will arrange a weekly lesson time and start date with the instructor during your initial conversation.

Once arrangements have been made with the instructor, please contact the CCSM office to inform us of your lesson time, pay tuition, and complete the registration process.

2.  How much do private lessons cost?

Tuition rates vary depending on lesson length and teacher classification.  CCSM has two classifications of instructors: Standard and Master.  Both provide 30-minute, 45-minute, and 60-minute lessons.  Please refer to the CCSM Academic Year Catalog for cost breakdowns.  Please note that the price of each individual private lesson is for reference only, as it is expected that students will commit to weekly lessons for the academic year.  Click Here for Tuition Prices and Private Lesson Policies.

3.  Can I start lessons at any time during the year?

Yes. CCSM accepts new students throughout the year. Following a paid four-lesson trial period, students will be required to enroll for the remainder of the academic year, and tuition will be prorated based on week of entry.  Please note, however, that instructors have limited space in their schedules and will have less availability as the school year progresses.  Because of this, it may become difficult to accommodate specific lesson day/time requests later in the year. 

4.  Where are lessons held?

Note: Private lessons and group classes are currently being held both online and in person. Visit our COVID-19 Updates page for more information.

Lessons are primarily held here at CCSM, in our classrooms on campus. Students can expect their lessons to take place in the same room every week.  A few of our instructors teach out of home studios in Claremont; in these cases, instructors will provide students with an address and directions to their home studio.  If you are unsure where your lesson will take place, please contact your instructor or the CCSM office for assistance.

5.  Do I need to attend lessons with my child?

Expectations vary depending on the program, instructor, and student age.  Consult your individual instructor to determine what would be most appropriate and helpful for your child.

Payment and Financial Aid:

1.  What methods of payment do you accept?

CCSM accepts check, cash (exact change only), as well as credit/debit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, JCB).  Please note that a 3% fee will be applied to all credit/debit card payments.  Direct bank account payments or ACH payments are also accepted and incur a 0.8% fee. 


2.  When and how do I pay?

As a general rule, all lessons and classes need to be paid for before they take place. You may pay in person at the CCSM office (via cash, check, or credit/debit card), online through the CCSM Student Portal, or by mailing a check (payable to CCSM) to 951 West Foothill Blvd, Claremont, CA 91711.

For students taking private lessons, monthly tuition payments are due on the 1st of the month for the forthcoming month.  Families will be emailed invoices reflecting the charges for upcoming private lessons and class sessions within that particular month.  Payments are considered late if not received by the 10th of the month.  Lessons that are registered for mid-month need to be paid for at the time of registration.

Group classes must be paid for in full at the time of registration.  Some classes may require a material fee, which is to be paid directly to the instructor.


3.  Do you offer financial aid?

Yes! We offer financial aid to qualifying students in the form of reduced tuition.  Learn More Here


4.  When can I apply for financial aid?

Although there is no application deadline, funds are limited, and we strongly recommend submitting an application by August 16th for Fall session and by May 18 for Summer session.

Group Classes:

1.  What group classes do you offer?

CCSM offers a variety of group classes for all ages.  Refer to our Academic Year Catalog for a complete list of the programs we offer. 

2.  What happens if a group class is cancelled?

On occasion, classes may be cancelled due to insufficient enrollment.  If this is the case, the tuition of the class will be refunded to you.  Please note that new student registration fees are non-refundable.

Charter Students:

1.  What is the registration process for Charter Students?

Charter students new to CCSM pay a $20 New Student Registration Fee out-of-pocket and begin the referral process to associate them with an instructor.  Once it is determined that CCSM has an instructor available that matches the student’s availability, CCSM provides the family with the tuition rate for the length of private lessons desired (or tuition of group class).  The family gives this information to their charter school educational specialist or teacher facilitator to order the PO.  All charter schools will also need to know the number of lessons to cover on the PO.  The number of lessons per month varies, depending on the day of the week of the lessons; please be sure to count accurately when giving your charter school this information.

CCSM is unable to schedule the student until the PO has arrived at CCSM.  If you would like your child to begin lessons prior to the arrival of the PO, you may pay out-of-pocket for that month’s lessons.  When the PO arrives, and if it covers the lessons you paid for, then CCSM will reimburse you for those lessons.

If your child plans to take lessons that are not covered by a PO (for example, extra lessons added), then you are required to pre-pay for those lessons before your child will be allowed to have them. (CCSM policy states that all music lessons be prepaid in the month in which the lessons occur.)

General Questions:

1.  What is your attendance policy?

Out of courtesy, students should notify their instructor of any absence for any reason.  However, prior notification does not exempt the student from payment. There will be no makeup lessons for private instruction or classes in cases of student absences.  CCSM is committed to pay the instructor for the time you have scheduled; therefore, this policy is strictly enforced.  If you anticipate a prolonged absence of 2 or more weeks, contact the CCSM office. With instructor approval we may adjust your account.

If an instructor is absent, the lesson will be rescheduled at a mutually convenient time.  Rescheduled lessons missed by the student will not be made up.

2.  Do students have opportunities to perform?

Yes!  There are multiple performance opportunities during the academic year, including monthly recitals, festivals, community events, competitions, and ensemble programs. 

3.  Do I need to have my own instrument?

Yes, we expect all students to either acquire or rent their own instruments.

4.  How young can my child start studying music?

We offer group classes for children as young as 6 months old. Consult a CCSM staff member to determine whether your child is ready to begin taking private lessons.

5.  Do you have offerings for adults?

Yes, CCSM offers private lessons for all ages, as well as group classes specifically geared toward adults.  Refer to our Academic Year Catalog for a list of our current offerings.

6.  Does CCSM have school holidays?

Yes, CCSM observes U.S. holidays throughout the year, generally following the Claremont Unified School District academic year calendar.  On holidays, all lessons and classes will be cancelled unless an instructor and student make special arrangements.  Click Here for a complete list of CCSM’s holiday breaks/school closures. 

7.  When are you open?

The CCSM office is open Monday-Friday from 1:00pm-6:00pm.  Instructors establish their own hours and may teach before and after the office is open.

8.  Where are you located?

CCSM is located at 951 West Foothill Boulevard in Claremont, CA. (East of Towne Ave, on the North side of the street, in the same complex as Baskin Robbins)