Frequently asked questions
WHAT IS ‘WHAM’? ARE YOU A FRANCHISE?
WHAM Theatre Schools was started by Mark Bowman in 2017 after working with Franchises in the past. However, WHAM is certainly not a Franchise. Mark decided to create a system which can appeal to the younger generation who all have different desires & ambitions.
Check out the “About Us” section to learn about the WHAM Ethos & Model.
Mark wanted to create a safe environment where children could learn how to be creative and to increase their confidence via the arts. He wanted to step away from the typical ‘theatre school’ setup, and for students to enjoy and learn new skills in Drama based subjects
Everything you see at WHAM, has been created by Mark and his team which includes former West End Stars, TV Actors, Dancers and Professional Musicians.
HOW MUCH IS A TASTER SESSION?
WHAT WILL MY CHILD DO AT WHAM DURING THE TASTER SESSION?
Each taster student joins in with our existing school timetable, dependent on their age group. This means they will experience up to 1 hour and 15 minutes in Triple Threat Activities which is Drama, Singing & Dancing Musical Theatre. Our students are put into appropriate age groups which are WHAM BUBZ, WHAM JUNIORS (ages 6 to 8) , WHAM MIDS (ages 9 to 11) and WHAM SENIORS (ages 12/13+).
CAN MY CHILD JUST JOIN IN WITH ONE PARTICULAR CLASS? WHAT IF MY CHILD WANTS TO DO MORE THAN JUST CLASS?
As we have just launched (2018) we are starting small with a personal service to our students & parents, therefore, our classes only consist of up to 1 hour 15 minutes (each group is different, so please check the class timetable). However, as we grow, we will be adding other Performing Arts Classes to the School. If you feel your child would benefit from more classes with us, do let us know as we take all feedback into account!
CAN I SIT IN THE CLASSES ON A WEEKLY BASIS? HOW WILL I KNOW HOW MY CHILD IS DOING?
We take safeguarding very seriously at WHAM, and like most Performing Arts Schools, parents aren’t permitted to stay in the classes with their children. This can often affect of the dynamic of the class, and can cause other students’ to feel uncomfortable & affect performance when strangers are in their session.
However, we do run “Bring a Parent” days, where our classes are designed for parents to attend WHAM for the day so they can take part!
We know that feedback is important to you, as just like school, we are aware of when asking your child what they did that day, you may get a very brief answer!
However, we do write Reports once every year after we can measure their progress fairly.
You’re always more than welcome to come and chat with myself or a member of the team if you would like to know more, and we can have a chat with their teachers to see how they’re getting on in each module! However, do try and let us know if you need to chat, as sometimes our team need to get started with teaching our students on time.
MY CHILD LOVES TO PERFORM, AND CONSTANTLY WANTS TO BE ON STAGE, WHAT PERFORMANCE OPPORTUNITIES ARE THERE?
That's great! We love enthusiastic students and are here to encourage their skill! However, at WHAM, we want to make sure that your child receives the best tuition and tools to understand how to perform. When Mark set up WHAM, his ethos was for the younger generation to learn new skills that they can use in everyday life and for performing arts.
Sometimes when our students are constantly working towards full scaled shows, they will miss out on our skills building exercises in Singing, Dance & Drama. Over the years, I have witnessed gentle children become stressed ,neurotic and anxious over large stage productions, whereas some thrive on it.
As, part of the WHAM Training System is to be able to offer something for everyone. Therefore, for those students that are interested in taking part in full stage shows, we will be offering separate opportunities outside of the usual WHAM sessions with local theatre partners, as well as staging our own events.
We know that as parents, you want to see what they're up to and what they've been working on. Therefore, we always offer an opportunity per academic year for you to see their performance progress. This may be in the form of an In-House Showcase, , Open Class Presentation or Bring a Parent Day!
WHAT SAFEGUARDING PROCEDURES DO YOU HAVE IN PLACE? HOW ARE YOUR TEACHERS VETTED?
We uphold a strict policy when looking after our students. All of my team (including myself) are required by the local authority and in line with our Child Protection Policy, to hold an Enhanced DBS Check and undertake child protection training from the Child Protection Company.
Every teacher is required to have a degree / completed sufficient training in their subject or to hold relevant industry experience to ensure our students get the best possible experience from WHAM Theatre Schools. We also have a WHAM first aiders on site (not including the external venue team).
Each class has a maximum limit, along with a specific ratio of adults to children. Our younger students are always supervised with a permanent assistant escorting them to and from their lessons; and to assist them when making trips to the toilet etc. Therefore, in their classes, there are always supervision by 2 team members.
As the Principal & Manager of the school is not a permanent teacher, their job is to oversee the teachers and the classes. Therefore, the Principal can provide extra support to the existing team members.
At present, the WHAM Model does not permit any more than two classes to be running at any one time, which provides a clearer and safer environment for our students.
WHAT ARE YOUR PAYMENT TERMS?
To ensure our team can focus on teaching our students on a weekly basis, we only accept payment electronically and do not accept cash or cheque. We offer a Direct Debit Facility.
We’ve tried to keep costs as low as possible for our parents as well as competitive:
WHAM BUBZ: £6.50 Per 45 minute Session
WHAM JUNIORS: £8.00 Per 60 Minute Session
WHAM MIDS: £9.50 Per 75 minute Session
WHAM SENIORS: £9.95 per 75 minute Session
Our classes run for 44 weeks of the year, and are calculated as follows:
CLASS FEE x NUMBER OF SESSIONS PER YEAR divided by 12 MONTHLY INSTALMENTS= Monthly Fee by Direct Debit
We do not stop during the Summer Holidays! We only stop at Easter, Mid-Term, 12th July Bank Holiday (Northern Ireland Only) and Christmas!
DO I STILL HAVE TO PAY DURING THE SCHOOL HOLIDAYS / FOR ABSENCES?
As per most performing arts & activity clubs, we do not authorise refunds for missed or absent sessions.
Our Monthly fees are calculated as follows:
CLASS FEE x NUMBER OF WEEKS PER YEAR divided by 12 MONTHS
This method enables a lower monthly membership is spread over 12 months, therefore, your direct debit will continue regardless of holidays.
CAN STUDENTS GAIN QUALIFICATIONS AT WHAM THEATRE SCHOOLS?
This is definately something that we will be introducing!
WHAT IF MY CHILD DECIDES WHAM ISN’T FOR THEM?
MONTHLY MEMBERSHIP SUBSCRIPTION
We understand that our students’ interests can change over time, which is why we have offered our Monthly Instalment Option by Direct Debit.
All that is required is for you to email us on firstname.lastname@example.org giving one month’s further notice if you've chosen the monthly direct debit option.
The office will then cancel your direct debit and amend your membership.
UPFRONT / SPLIT PAYMENTS
However, if you have chosen to pay for 11 sessions upfront with a discount, a minimum of 8 weeks notice must be provided.