We have finally received the word that we can start marching band activities. Details:
We have taken great strides to make this happen safely by following all state and district protocols. The THS administration, band boosters, student leadership, and I have worked together and will continue to do so to keep our band program active, to prepare for any possible upcoming permitted performances, and to build the band family. We are planning to do senior/rookie activities, do band marching basics, have a senior band parent night, and do other things that we usually do with marching band off the field. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Mr. K directly 734 778 3418
The September Meeting of the Trenton Band Boosters will be held on Monday September 14 at 630pm on the lawn of Trenton HS. Please bring your own chair. See you then!
This has been posted on Schoology in the marching band group and in each band course:
It has been established that we will not be performing on the field this fall due to a combination of not having a home field (construction not complete until late October), Phase 4 rules, no competitions being held in the state, and now an MHSAA guideline stating that bands are not permitted at high school football games this season.
It is what it is. However - we still may have an opportunity to do some marching PRACTICES and maybe even some instrumental practices for marching band. Things are up in the air right now but I'm working to make things happen if possible.
Other things that I am working for that I want to do:
* Band Camp dance - if permitted, we will still have it
* Band Camp talent show - ditto
* Rookie/Senior events
* learning the new "stretch" from the drum majors
* basics on the field
* parades: Trenton Xmas parade, possible out of town parades
* possible other performances in the fall, winter, or spring
We are put into the position of having to be creative while being safe. It's a different kind of year for us but that doesn't mean that it has to be a 'cancelled' year. We can do other things. Your $150 for being in marching band has already bought you a hat (we need to find a good way to get them to you - they are cool - baseball caps with our band uni logo on them) that will be used as our uniform this year. Since passing out, passing in, and handling of uniforms might be difficult under restrictions, the hat will be yours to keep along with your season t-shirt which has yet to be designed and ordered. More to come on that soon. You have already paid for both. Summer band staff for guard and drumline also has been part of your band fee.
Further use of that $150 will be for the dance (above), transportation to out of town events (if permitted), and possible band staff for practices in the fall or spring.
We are still a living, breathing organization event though it's been on pause for way too long. Now that school is starting up and restrictions are starting to be lifted, more opportunities will present themselves for us to finally get back together. Stay tuned.
Today, the state said that football can start up with games on Sept 17. This is a total reversal of the August 14 cancellation. While that situation is still in flux with many districts already opting out of football competition and conferences deciding not to play, we at Trenton HS are just now dealing with the new situation.
What I can tell you for 100% sure is this: We still will not be doing our regular field drill fall marching band activity no matter what happens.
1. We do not currently have a home field. Our stadium will not be completed until late October.
2. We are still in Phase 4 with a maximum of 100 people allowed in any event including a football game. MHSAA speculated that there will be two tickets for each player to allow for parents to watch them and that will be the entire set of spectators. With players for both teams and two tickets per player plus coaches, admin, safety and medical staff, that's nearing if not over the limit. Bands are not possible.
So you can tell that field performance marching band activities simply are not going to happen in Trenton. However, that does not mean that with new updated football practice rules that may apply to outdoor marching band activities that we won't be allowed to do some marching band PRACTICES. At this time, it is not known if it's allowed or not but the question has been raised with the school district by me and they are discussing the matter as they learn new information.
Please be patient. This is all that I know at this time. I will update you on the website as more is decided.
Group on Schoology for all marching band members. Will especially be valuable for those not currently enrolled in a first trimester band class (DCTC, color guard, others):
Access code: VCX6-PJHV-N7P64
All:: As we head into the most different school year since...last year....we will be doing things a little bit differently at THS. The entire district will be on a system called Schoology to organize lessons and materials and to streamline delivery of instruction remotely and for when we return face-to-face.
One of the features of Schoology is the Groups section. Much like how our Facebook page works, it's a dialogue based page that will also give us the opportunity to share documents and other information. Once you and your student get logged into and familiar with Schoology, the site code for joining the new TRENTON BAND BOOSTERS group is:
Eventually, I want to wean the organization off of social media (Facebook) completely and onto stand-alone websites like this one and Schoology for online communication.
Arthurs MS Jr Band Boosters site code:
After discussions with the Trenton Public Schools administration and the Trenton Band Boosters, it has been decided that we will suspend the fall Trenton HS Marching Band season. As we have been under TPS guidance to follow MHSAA football guidelines for health and safety, it was inevitable that we suspend our season when high school football was suspended.
We will revisit the situation after the first trimester. Our next performance and practice opportunity would be the Trenton Christmas Parade. After that, we are planning on participating in the spring football season if it does indeed occur or possibly performing in some capacity at some other spring sport as the state and school district allow.
Keep this in mind: MARCHING BAND IS NOT CANCELLED. It is suspended until we are permitted to safely continue our activity by state and district authorities. I plan on doing other marching band activities this year that we don't usually do to make up for our lost fall season. Depending upon where the COVID-19 situation is in terms of being able to practice, perform, and when we are permitted to move forward is when we will plan for future activities. However until then, it is not in anyone's best interest to plan for things without knowing what is possible.
It is understandable that you may have many questions. I will address them directly if you email/text me or you may find those answers in updates to this blog soon as school approaches.
Camp Week on the THS Campus, previously scheduled for August 17-20, has been postponed to the week of August 24th. The Band Boosters will update everyone once we have some additional direction from the school district administration. We would like to thank everyone for your patience!
Our August Band Booster Meeting will be held on Tuesday August 11th at 6:30PM on the front lawn of Trenton High School. Bring a lawn chair!
Full band practices scheduled for the week of Monday Aug 10 through Thursday Aug 13 have been suspended. Band camp Aug 17-20 possibilities for new practice schedule and procedures, pushing camp one or two weeks later, or cancellation are being discussed as more guidelines are set by state and district authorities.
As the Michigan High School Athletic Association and Governor Whitmer announce updated restrictions, the situation remains unsettled. Trenton Public Schools administration and I have met to discuss options and possibilities with the health and safety of students, parents, and staff as the number one priority.
In other recent developments, the entire marching band competitive season in the state of Michigan has been canceled for 2020 including the Trenton Invitational. Furthermore, assuming we continue to be in Phase 4 of restrictions which requires 100 or fewer total people in a stadium for any event, the band will not be attending football games if they are held. Only in Phase 5 would that number go to 250 maximum which would still be problematic for a band of 173 members, two football teams, coaches, officials, medical staff, band pit crews, administration, and possible attending parents of players.
I am working to find options to give THS Marching Band members some level of music instruction in a safe manner in the month of August. We still currently have drumline and color guard practices happening using required health and safety protocols and social distancing measures but that is mainly due to their instruments/equipment not being wind instruments which carry their own restrictions for social distancing and aerosol protection.
It may be possible to potentially have marching-only practices without instruments or wind instrument sectionals in small groups but I have been given the directive that only small groups such as one or two sections can be on campus at a time. All 173 will not be permitted to practice on campus even if split up into sections due to health screening issues, bond construction limitations of available space, and the fact that no students are permitted inside any district school building. Sports teams are facing the same issues but since they are much smaller, they may be able to overcome them. High risk, high contact sports such as football, however, may not be able to. The MHSAA has stated that as mid-August approaches, they will update rules and mandates for sports including football which has already seen their first allowed practice week changed to contact-less no pads. They are at the same point that marching bands are as we all wait for the next set of guidelines.
As we head into August, I will update this News blog with any new information as it happens. This blog will also continue to be shared on the THS Band 2020-2021 facebook page. Stay safe! Mr. Kurilko