FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
DRUM CORPS ACADEMY COHORT @ OLNEY CHARTER HIGH SCHOOL
WHAT IS DCAC?
The Drum Corps Academy Cohort is a group of 30-60 students at Olney Charter High School that have the same schedule, learn to play an instrument, and commit to high academic standards with the daily goal of going to college.
IS THIS A SEPARATE HIGH SCHOOL?
No. DCAC students are OCHS students. However, DCAC students will have separate classes, different teachers, different uniform, and different requirements (musical and academic) than OCHS students.
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS TO GET IN TO DCAC? IS THERE A MUSIC AUDITION?
There are no academic requirements to get in to DCAC. You don’t need to have all A’s & B’s to get in. There is no music audition. However, there is an academic requirement to STAY IN DCAC. Students with failing grades will be given the multiple supports needed to bring their grades up. If the grades do not come up, the student will be scheduled out of DCAC classes. The student will remain an Olney Charter High School student, but will no longer be in the Drum Corps Academy Cohort.
HOW DO YOU APPLY?
There is a two-step application process - one for Olney Charter High School, and one for the Drum Corps Academy Cohort.
WHAT IS A DRUM CORPS?
Drum Corps is short for Drum & Bugle Corps. It is like a marching band, but there are only brass and percussion instruments. Some of the recent world champion drum corps are Blue Devils, Blue Coats, Cadets, Reading Buccaneers, Phantom Regiment, and Santa Clara Vanguard.
WHAT INSTRUMENTS CAN I LEARN?
You can choose from trumpet, mellophone, baritone, tuba, drumline percussion (snare, tenor, bass drum), and front ensemble (marimba, xylophone, auxiliary percussion).
IF THERE ARE TOO MANY STUDENTS PLAYING DRUMS, SOME STUDENTS MAY BE REQUIRED TO SWITCH TO ANOTHER INSTRUMENT.
WHEN IS BAND PRACTICE?
The band practices together first period and last period. DCAC will never have mandatory practices after school. First period is all about marching. Last period is all about instruments.
HOW MANY PERFORMANCES ARE THERE?
The band will have several mandatory performances. Some will be during school, but there will be a few Saturday parades, a parade on Memorial Day, and a Saturday evening trip to a Band Competition.
WHO ARE THE TEACHERS?
We are recruiting staff from all over the country. The DCAC will have three teachers in the first year, a certified English, Math, and Music teacher. All of these teachers will have extensive Drum Corps experience. Additionally, we will have an instructional aide who will assist with ELL, IEP, and Honors students. All four staff members will teach band practices.
IS DCAC COLLEGE PREP?
Yes. It is our goal for every DCAC student to apply, be accepted, attend, and graduate from college. Throughout your four years at DCAC, you will work with band members from UPenn, Temple, and many other local colleges. DCAC staff will actively track you through your college years, offering supports and giving you a chance to come back to inspire current students.
WHAT SUPPORTS ARE AVAILABLE TO KEEP DCAC STUDENTS ON COURSE FOR COLLEGE?
Being in a Drum Corps takes determination, focus, and grit - and so does college. By practicing excellence in music, DCAC students will transfer that to their academics. We are writing grants to allow us to offer a one-to-one iPad program as well as infusing our curriculum with music. For example, a math project may be to compose a melody using an algorithm, or an English assignment might be to analyze poetic form in the lyrics to a popular song. DCAC students are moved and motivated by music, so infusing the curriculum with music will move and motivate students academically.
WHAT SPORTS AND AFTER SCHOOL ACTIVITIES ARE AVAILABLE TO DCAC STUDENTS?
After School clubs: Anime Club, Arabic Club, Black History Club, Blue Ink, Board Game Club, Chess Team, Comedy Club, Debate Team, Drama Club, Gay Straight Alliance, Girls in Action, Muslim Community Club, Robotics and Game Design, Tennis Club , Video Game and Card Playing Club, Voice Ensemble, Young Life, Yoga Club, Youth in Medicine.
Sports: Olney Charter High School offers a full range of sports. In recent years, OCHS has won an all-city baseball championship and the football team has qualified for playoffs.