District 8 Policies & Procedures
District 8 would like to welcome new teachers! Each ILMEA District is similar, but each district varies slightly in policies and procedures. Thank you for taking time to learn about District 8. Please address specific ensemble questions to division representatives. General questions should be directed to the District President.
First and foremost, get registered in the RNS. Once you enter your information, you will start receiving emails from the District 8 Leadership Team. See the "How to Participate" page for detailed instructions on registering. IMPORTANT NOTE: If you want to receive emails from the jazz division, make sure to check “jazz” as a teaching area even though you may not have an official jazz program at your school. Accuracy is EXTREMELY important as the programs and billing is generated from the data entered in the RNS by teachers like you!
General District 8 Information
Audition fees are $8 per entry. Billing sheets are generated through the RNS. Each school district is responsible for printing the billing sheet and mailing the appropriate fees to the address listed on the billing sheet before the deadline date. Students from schools with outstanding audition fee balances may not be selected for district festival until after all fees are paid in full.
You may only nominate students that attend your school - No private students, no students from the same school district but attend a different school. Homeschool students that participate in their public school's performing ensembles should be nominated through the school where they participate in music.
Students may only audition for one ensemble unless the festivals fall on a different day. For example, our band/choir/sometimes orchestra festival fall on the same date, so a student must choose which ensemble they will audition for. However, the jazz festival is on a different Saturday, so that student may decide to audition for Sr. Band and Vocal Jazz Ensemble.
Auditions are scheduled. If you have special requests, and email will be sent through the RNS with a link to a google form. Please submit your requests by the nomination deadline. If you would like your students to be grouped in a block because you will be busing together, make sure to fill out the google form. Otherwise, students may be placed randomly throughout the day. When nominating your students, please leave the AM or PM buttons blank in the RNS.
Junior Ensembles are auditioned in District 8, and there is a cycle set for Junior Wind and Percussion etudes. Junior Choral students prepare selections from the concert repertoire AND skills. Please make sure to check the grade levels that are assigned to each ensemble. 9th grade students participate in Junior Mixed Choir. High schools nominating students for Sr. Choir and Junior Mixed must pay two participation fees – one junior and one senior fee, unless the school nominating is a Jr/Sr High that includes 7-12 in one building.
Orchestra is shared between District 2 and District 8. Schools who want to send strings for orchestra will have to register in both districts for the RNS, however, only one school participation fee is paid per year. Please indicate 2/8 when you pay your fee so that the state office knows to activate you in both districts.
EGM Festival (formerly JEM) - Elementary Festival
District 8 hosts one of the largest Elementary General Music Festivals in the state. All students nominated by the teachers are selected for one of the following ensembles: African Drumming, Orff Ensemble, Creative Movement, Children’s Choir, Recorder Ensemble, Ukelele Ensemble. This is a wonderful opportunity to get 6th grade students involved and excited about auditioning for the ensembles in 7th and 8th grade. There is no school participation or nomination fee for EGM. There is a $10 participant fee for each student that is selected for the festival. Ensembles are for 4-6th grade students. Please check the grade requirements for each ensemble before nominating students.
Directors that have students selected for district festivals are notified via email through the RNS shortly after audition day. Scores and rank order cannot be revealed. While ILMEA is an educational organization, and scores might provide some insight for a student, we simply cannot release all the students ‘names and scores publically. Further, a student’s score only holds true value when compared to the rest of the scores in the room. We feel that students can learn a great deal through the audition process even without knowledge of their score. It can be a good preparation for future auditions and/or job interviews where no feedback is received, and sometimes the students learn and important lesson on how to deal with rejection and move on. We understand this policy can be frustrating for teachers and students, but please know that we do everything possible to ensure consistency in our judges, and students are selected in numerical order by the judges. Judges also determine which wind students are assigned to orchestra based on their audition. The goal is to create two strong ensembles. District 8 hires judges from outside of the district to help ensure a fair audition process. If you would like to know more about the selection process, please ask!