Frequently Asked Questions - updated 11-29-21


Which MIC locations are currently open?
Chicago - St. James and Gratz Center, Downers Grove, Evanston Downtown (Sherman Ave.), Evanston East (Chicago and Grove St.), Lake Forest, Lincolnshire, and Winnetka campuses. 
What should I do if my child or I are not feeling well?
If you or your child are sick, please stay home. If you are symptomatic and would like to take a lesson, please contact your teacher to make arrangements for a remote lesson.


Do I need to wear a face covering?
Yes, wearing face coverings that cover the nose and mouth is mandatory for all students ages 2 and up and accompanying family members regardless of vaccination status. If you do not have one, MIC will gladly provide one.


What do I need to do if I travel internationally?

If you have travelled internationally, you are required to provide a negative Covid PCR test taken 3-5 days after arriving back in the United States before entering an MIC campus. Once this is provided, in-person lessons may resume; virtual lessons will occur while awaiting testing results.


What are campus safety precautions based on?
Recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).


What changes have been made to MIC facilities to increase the safety for visitors and staff?

  • Ventilation systems have been upgraded with new filters, bi-polar ionization units, and improved air flow as needed, by campus.
  • Clear acrylic dividers have been installed in the reception areas and in some studios.
  • Touch-free hand sanitizers and soap dispensers are readily available.
  • Signage has been added to the floors reminding guests about proper social distancing.
  • Stringent sanitization procedures have been implemented.

What can I expect when I enter the building?

Each visitor needs to answer self-screening health questions prior to entering an MIC campus. In addition, visitors are expected to comply with social distancing guidelines at all times.

What does self-screening consist of?

All visitors must review and answer the screening questions posted at the main entrancesand affirm that they have not answered “yes” to any of the questions. All visitors are also required to manually SIGN-IN on sheets provided by the Campus Directors. The purpose of self-screening and sign-in is to:

  1. Prevent symptomatic people from entering the building;
  2. Maintain a record of everyone who was in the building on any given day, in case contact tracing becomes necessary;
  3. Establish the vaccination status of visitors. (For woodwind, brass, and vocalists) See screening questions below.

What are the screening questions?


  1. In the past two weeks, have you tested positive for COVID, been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, or exhibited symptoms associated with COVID?
             NOs to all of these questions are required for admittance. 
  2. Have you traveled internationally in the past two weeks?
             NO is required for admittance. If the answer is YES, visitors must show a negative PCR test administered 3-5 days after their date of return to the US.


What are the criteria for decisions regarding closing or re-opening MIC campuses?
Recommendations and statistics from the Illinois Department of Public Health (The Music Institute of Chicago campuses in Chicago St. James, Downers Grove, Evanston, Lake Forest, and Winnetka reside in IDPH regions 8, 9, 10 and 11). A key metric is COVID-19 test positivity (during a 7-day rolling average). Positivity average must be equal to or less than 8%.

What will happen if Illinois returns to Stage 3?
No MIC campuses will be open if Illinois returns to Stage 3. All instruction will immediately convert to remote learning.

How do I schedule an in-person lesson?
You make arrangements for in-person private lessons dierctly with your private lesson instructor. Scheduling in-person instruction is based on student and teacher preferences and space availability at MIC campuses.

What does a “hybrid” teaching schedule mean?
Weekly lessons and classes are offered in a combination of online and in-person settings, based on student and teacher preferences and space availability at an MIC campus.

What if I want to continue with online lessons only?
Students will always have the option for online lessons.

May I make an appointment to practice at an MIC campuses?
Not at this time. We are prioritizing scheduling as much in-person instruction as possible. Students may only come to MIC campuses for lessons or recording sessions.

When should I arrive for my in-person lesson?
Please arrive 5 minutes before your lesson time so you have time to check in, wash your hands, and safely make your way to a teaching studio. 

What if I don’t have a lesson scheduled or an appointment?
No one without a scheduled lesson or an appointment will be permitted into the building. Please call your campus director or the general number in advance to make an appointment: 847.905.1500.

Who may accompany a student to an in-person lesson?
No more than one parent or adult guardian may accompany a student to a lesson.

What happens if I do not pass the screening process?
If you answer affirmatively to any self-screening question, please do not enter the building. You will need to reschedule your lesson with your teacher in accordance with the make-up lesson policy. It is preferable to stay home and reschedule in advance, as mentioned above.

Do MIC staff members have the authority to refuse entry to students and other visitors?
Yes. Strict protocols will be observed in the best interest of everyone.

What happens if someone tests positive for Covid-19?
MIC staff will immediately notify every visitor who might have come in contact with the person testing positive. MIC staff will determine if further action (e.g., additional cleaning, building closure) is necessary.

What should I do if I test positive for COVID-19 after being at MIC for a lesson or meeting?
Please contact the Dean and Vice President of Academic Affairs, Emily Abraham immediately.

What happens to the information collected in the screening process?
Arrival and departure times for all visitors, as well as data collected in the screening process is necessary in event there is a need for contact tracing. MIC will retain the information in a secure computer file and privacy will be maintained at all times.  

What is your cleaning protocol?
Common surfaces, including doorknobs, light switches, and piano keyboards, are cleaned with a disinfectant multiple times daily.

What are you doing to keep MIC staff and faculty safe?
MIC staff and faculty are subject to the same safety precautions as all other visitors. They are provided with N-95 or KN-95 face coverings and face shields. Staff and faculty with immune-deficiencies or who are the primary caretakers for an elderly or ill family member have the option to work from home.

Will tuition be reduced for online lessons?  
No. MIC faculty continue to provide high quality instruction and have received additional training to learn new skills to offer remote teaching that is interactive and engaging. Note that costs have increased substantially because of necessary investments in technology, as well as increased costs for campus safety measures.