Program Policies

New students may begin lessons any time during a given semester. Due to student demand, teacher request is on a first-come, first-served basis. New students need to register through the Academy of Music Office by calling 651.631.5108 or emailing

Lessons generally occur on the University of Northwestern campus. On a space-needed basis, instruction may also take place at the Academy's satellite locations:

  • Roseville Covenant Church

  • Hope Christian Church

  • Salem Covenant Church

Lesson location should be confirmed with the student's private instructor. Get directions by going to the locations tab of Private Lessons.

Full Year registration includes 28 lessons during the Fall and Spring semesters. Fall-only tuition includes 13 lessons during a 15-week term. Spring-only tuition includes 15 lessons during a 17-week term. Additional lessons may be added at the end of each term as arranged by the instructor and student at a prorated fee.

Summer registration is flexible; all summer tuition will be charge on a prorated basis. Families choose the number of lessons that will fit their schedules.


Teachers must be notified of known absences (concerts, sporting events, vacation, etc.) at least one week in advance of the lesson. If a student is ill, a call must be made to the teacher’s phone at least two hours prior to the lesson.

Only one make-up lesson will be given each semester (for excused absences only). If more than one lesson is missed, the lesson and lesson fee are forfeited.

If a call is not received and the teacher was not notified beforehand, that absence will be considered unexcused and the lesson fee will be forfeited. In certain cases (family emergency, extreme weather, extended illness), efforts will be made to reconcile lost time in the best interest of both parties.


Lessons cancelled by an instructor will be made up at the earliest convenience of both the teacher and the student. Emergency cancellations will be posted outside of the Academy of Music office.

The Academy of Music only cancels lessons for bad weather when University of Northwestern cancels events for that day. Call 651-631-5310 to find out if the campus is closed. If the student decides to cancel the lesson due to bad weather but the Northwestern campus is still open, the instructor is not obligated to make up the lesson.

Late arrivals

Students are expected to arrive on time for their lessons/classes.Instructors will wait 15 minutes before assuming that a student is absent for a lesson. Instructors are not required to make up the lost time. However, an instructor who arrives late will arrange to make up any missed lesson time.

Make-Up lessons

One make-up lesson will be provided each semester for excused absences only. See Absences, below, for more information. If more than one lesson is missed, the lesson(s) and lesson fee(s) will be forfeited.


Withdrawing a student from lessons or classes requires written notification to the Academy office. Students who discontinue and do not provide written notification of withdrawal will continue to be considered officially enrolled and be held responsible for any tuition charges associated with an official enrollment.

Refunds will be given on a prorated basis if a student withdraws from lessons prior to the sixth week of the semester. No refunds or credits will be given if notice of withdrawal or cancellation is given after the sixth week of the semester. Outstanding balances must be paid in full upon cancellation.


Once registered, tuition may be paid by credit card (online or over the phone) or check.

Payments may be made in full or in monthly installments for an additional $20 fee (per family per semester except for full year registrations). Monthly invoices will be sent by e-mail. 

Checks can be placed in the drop box located outside the Academy office or mailed to:
Accounts Receivable
University of Northwestern
3003 Snelling Ave. N.
St. Paul, MN 55113-1598

Late Payments

Late payments will be accessed an interest charge. In the event that it is necessary to place an account with a commercial collection agency, the student/parent will be responsible for all collection costs, along with attorney fees and court costs incurred by the college.

Families with an overdue balance may not register for additional activities until the overdue balance has been paid.

Registration Fee

There is a nonrefundable $15 registration fee per family per semester. The spring registration fee will be waived if the family registers for the "full year" option (28 lessons) in the fall.

Late Registration Fee

There will be a $20 late registration fee applied if a student begins lessons before registering.


Refunds will be given on a prorated basis if a student withdraws from lessons prior to the sixth week of the semester. No refunds or credits will be given if notice of withdrawal or cancellation is given after the sixth week of the semester. Outstanding balances must be paid in full upon cancellation.

Family Discount

Families registering three or more students or registering for lessons on three or more instruments/ensembles during the same transaction will receive a 10 percent discount off the family's total tuition per semester. The discount does not apply towards the registration fee or the monthly installment plan fee.

Academy of Music students are expected to:

  • Keep a regular practice routine as outlined by their instructor and (when applicable) in consultation with their parents/guardians.
  • Attend all lessons, classes, rehearsals, and recitals in which they are involved.
  • Bring instrument, music, and all appropriate materials to lessons, rehearsals, classes and recitals.

Behavior in the Building

The lobbies and hallways serve as both a waiting area for students prior to lessons and a meeting place for parents, students and instructors. Students are expected to speak quietly in these areas to prevent interference with instruction in nearby studios, classrooms and/or offices. Parents/guardians are responsible for curtailing running, loud play, and any dangerous or disturbing behavior. Children must be supervised by a parent or another adult at all times.

Academy property

The Academy provides drawers labeled "books and toys" located directly across the hall from the Academy office and on the third floor music hall in Nazareth hall. These drawers are stocked with books, coloring books, games, doodle boards and more. All Academy families are welcome to use these items while waiting for a music lesson to finish. Parents are responsible to help their children respect the property of the Academy and ensure that they return everything to the drawers before leaving the building.

Student Dismissal

Students who do not meet the expectations outlined above may be dismissed with lesson tuition forfeited.

Address change

Changes of address, telephone or e-mail address must be provided to the Academy of Music office in a timely manner.