Firstly, I would like to say a huge big thank you to all of our families for your ongoing support and patience with us through this challenging time. The word ‘unprecedented’ has quickly become part of our daily vocabulary, but it is just so accurate. In the 18 years that I have been running Commotion, I have never experienced anything like this. It has been tough on our students, disruptive for our families, and tragic for our staff – many of whom were not eligible for Jobkeeper and had to be stood down while we were closed. I am really looking forward to getting back to normal. Commotion plays a big role in all of our lives.
As you may have seen, the NSW Government recently announced that dance studios are will be able to commence classes from the 13th of June. This is wonderful exciting news for our students, but it comes with new challenges because the government has temporarily restricted class sizes to 9 per class. It’s an unfortunate situation because it prohibits us from going back to a normal timetable right away. For example, a class of 25 that used to use one room, would have to take up three rooms in our timetable, and we already were running a maxed-out timetable before Coronavirus. Not to mention the financial non-viability of such small class numbers, which wouldn’t even begin to cover costs.
Challenges aside, we know that our students are VERY excited to get back in the studio AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, which is why we have quickly worked to create a [temporary] THREE WEEK “Commotion UNITE” special program. We have reworked our schedule to fit as many classes as possible and provide something for everyone.
Families will be able to opt into this 3-week-program. We know that every household is in a different situation at the moment. Some are reluctant to return to after-school activities just yet, either due to health concerns, needing more time to adapt to school going back, or perhaps impacted financially due to loss of income.
We are discounting the fees to below our normal rates for this special one-off program to help make it more affordable for more families. To sign up for it, parents will go onto our website and select classes for their kids. Payment is made through the website and is upfront. This is the ONLY method of booking available. We have set up a system that caps each session to 9 students, and once it sells out it’s unavailable. This is crucial to the manageability of this short-term solution for us.
Due to the limited nature of available spots for each session, we are offering it as a three-week block only. Unfortunately, we will not be able to provide refunds or credits for any missed classes within these three weeks. We can offer makeup lessons in Term 3, to be used additionally to any existing enrolment, not in replacement of.
We decided to call it Commotion UNITE because it’s bringing us together again. The three-week special program will commence from Monday 15th June and conclude on Saturday the 4th of July. Our team is so excited to make these last three weeks of what would have been Term Two, the most magical, fun, and enjoyable experience for our students that we possibly can.
With limited spots available (which unfortunately is outside of our control), bookings are now open. Click here to book your child's spot now. Please email if you have any questions or technical problems with the booking process.
Term One was tragically cut short by three weeks. In a previous communication, we had stated that we would “make up” those three weeks (that have already been paid for) in the form of additional weekend classes and holiday sessions. We have heard some feedback from parents that this doesn’t work for everyone, and so we have decided to keep it simple and just not bill anyone the first three weeks of Term 3.
(I know what you’re thinking…) but we can’t use the temporary “Commotion UNITE” program to make up those already paid for weeks because it’s a different price, and it would impossible to manage administratively with altered timetable, different pricing structure, some students participating and some not able to due to family circumstances and/or the altered timetable and/or limited capacities.
So just to make it super clear. Everyone who was enrolled (and paid) for Term One has 3 weeks credit that will be redeemable for the first three weeks of Term Three. We are confident that government restrictions will have eased to the next stage by then and we will be back to our normal timetable. Term Three will be billed as a 7-week term.
A COVID-SAFE STUDIO
Through my work as director of Studio Savvy, I have been working closely with many other dance studio owners to lead the industry through this crisis, and one of our main focuses has been action plans to create safe environments for our students. We have an extensive, highly-detailed operations plan with newly implemented policies and procedures for a post-COVID reopening. Our full information booklet introducing the new rules and measures in place will be published on our website next week and emailed to our families.
Some of the new measures in place to help protect our students and our staff include:
Hand sanitizer station at the entrance
Hand sanitizer in each room
Signs throughout to remind students to distance, wash hands, etc.
No use of handheld props
Changes to our class plans and choreography to avoid partner-work
Parents encouraged to wait in cars or drop off
Regular disinfecting of door handles and common surfaces
Line markings in the room to help students social distance
Instructions to parents to not send children if showing any symptoms
And now it’s time for the (anticipated) FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Q. How much is Commotion UNITE?
A. Each class is purchased in advance as a three-week-program. Students can select multiple classes, there is no limit. The prices below are for the full three weeks and are inclusive of GST. Upfront payment through the booking site is required to secure your child’s spot.
READY SET DANCE $45 (upfront price covers all three weeks = $15 per class)
READY SET BALLET $30 (upfront price covers all three weeks = $10 per class)
RECREATIONAL $40 (upfront price covers all three weeks = $13.33 per class)
TROUPE $120 (upfront price covers all three weeks the four Troupe sessions = $10 per class)
Q. I want my child to dance with their friends, with a new timetable for the three weeks of Commotion UNITE, how can I guarantee this?
A. We strongly suggest coordinating with friends prior to booking. Most class types and age groups have multiple session times, so you will need to choose one. If you plan which one to select with your friends and book at the same time, you’ll be able to control the process of being in the same class. The system shows how many spots for each session are available when booking.
Q. My child used to do 2 classes a week, but would like to do more now. Can we select more classes than we used to do for Commotion UNITE?
A. The beauty of this program is that it will run completely separate from our permanent enrolments and regular billing. Students can select different classes and styles to what they normally do. They could choose to do more or less. Whatever works best for you and your family.
Q. This is annoying, can’t we just go back to normal?
A. I wish! This three-week-program is the best possible solution for us to provide something to our students who are desperate to come back, whilst still abiding by the law. Thankfully it won’t be long until the next phase of easing of restrictions, which should line up nicely with the commencement of Term Three.
Q. Will Commotion.ONLINE continue?
A. On 13th June all existing Commotion.ONLINE members will be moved to a “free membership” so no charges continue but will have ongoing access to the full catalogue of tutorials for free. Zoom classes will cease after Saturday 13th June.
Q. Will Troupes be continuing to work on their routines during these three weeks?
A. Yes. Our regular teaching staff will be continuing to work on routines that have already been started. Our goal is to have them ready for official filming by early-term three. We don’t have 100% confirmation yet, but all signs are pointing to eisteddfods being back in some form or another in the next few months. We will also be focusing time on redeveloping technique, strength, and stamina – and reinspiring our dancers.
Q. Do Troupe students get access to recreational classes in Commotion UNITE?
A. They can choose to purchase those additional programs, but it’s not included. The price of the Troupe program has been dropped to $40 per week for the three weeks of Commotion UNITE, to just cover the four Troupe classes. We have held a spot for every troupe student.
Q. What if we have already paid for the whole year up front? What’s happening with that? Can we get a refund?
A. A few families paid for the entire year upfront at the beginning of 2020, to maximize their VIP cash discount. These families can choose from the following two options: They can either request a refund for Term 2 (which can be requested any time between the 1/7/20 and 31/12/20 by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org) or this amount will be automatically credited forward to 2021, which we will apply to the account at a 110% rate, providing a further discount. If any of the families who have paid for the year in advance would prefer for Commotion UNITE to come out of their credit please contact us as soon as possible.
Q. Can we use Active Vouchers and/or Creative Vouchers for the three weeks of Commotion UNITE?
A. Unfortunately, the NSW has strict rules about the eligibility of vouchers for programs that are less than 6 weeks. We suggest putting them towards Term Three fees. They can still be processed at any time through our website.
Q. What happens if the government doesn’t ease restrictions by 20th July (beginning of Term Three)?
A. We are counting on being able to be back to the full timetable, but we do have contingency plans that are actionable, including renting additional spaces if needed.
Q. I can’t see all the classes on the timetable?
A. Unfortunately because of the restrictions of ten per class, we have had to completely rework the timetable. Some classes will be missing, but we assure you they will be back in term 3. We weren’t able to include acrobatics in the Commotion Unite program due to physical contact required when spotting acrobatic tricks
Q. I asked them, and my child said that they don’t want to dance anymore. What should I do?
A. This is understandable. It’s been such a long time now, and the momentum has been lost. Even if they decide not to register for this optional Commotion UNITE three-week-program, I really do think it’s to every child’s benefit to come back to the studio for the three weeks at the beginning of Term Three, for the classes that have already been paid for anyway. This gives them a perfect obligation-free opportunity to experience another few weeks, getting their confidence back, discovering their comfort-zone, a chance to reconnect with their classmates and a proper opportunity to really determine whether or not they enjoy dancing. The risk otherwise, is that their decision might be based on anxiety, break of habit, or just generally feeling disconnected from the studio. Important decisions are best made from a position of open-mindedness.
We anticipate that for some of our youngest students, we will likely encounter some newly developed separation anxiety. Children have spent most of their time at home with parents over the last few months. Our teachers are prepared for this and will be extra patient with easing students through this transitional period.
Q. Will we still have a concert this year?
A. Yes, we will :)
We can’t wait to see you!
Love to the Commotion family
from our entire team.
COMMOTION UNITE TIMETABLE
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