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ETHS Orchestras Registration FAQ for  Orchestra Class of 2027

Frequently asked questions about requesting orchestra as an elective:

The process of finding enough room in your student’s schedule can be confusing – especially at the incoming freshman level. Here some suggestions for making sure orchestra can fit into your schedule:

Q: What course do I request if I want to be in orchestra?
A: Request MU0170 – Orchestra. It takes one class block. Be sure that ORCHESTRA is your top elective priority (after Biology and World Language prompts), or it will not be placed in your schedule.

Q: What if I want Honors Credit for orchestra?
A: You may choose to take orchestra for honors credit once you have started school in August. HC is based on additional activities you select to perform in (such as marching orchestra, jazz groups, baroque ensemble, etc.), and you may not know this right now, as you sign up. We will make the level changes for you during the first semester of the year.

Q; Do I have to enroll in orchestra if I want to play in a chamber, or other lab group?
A: Yes, you do. All of our extra-curricular groups, like baroque ensemble and jazz, are subdivisions of our main ensembles – BAND, CHOIR, and ORCHESTRA. Your academic credit is obtained from these ensembles.

Q: What if I play a non-traditional orchestra or orchestra instrument such as piano or guitar?
A: Piano and guitar players who want to play in extra-curricular groups such as jazz or Baroque groups must meet with Mr. Bufis, Mrs. Sullivan, and Mr. Acevedo to discuss this interest. Use the contact information below to get in touch with us. We also encourage you to sign up for one of our non-performance classes such as AP Music Theory, Guitar 1 or Guitar 2, or Music Technology & Recording 1 2 or 3, Piano 1 or 2, or “Learn to Play Music” sequences so you are getting a fine arts credit. Perhaps you also sing – consider joining Choir!

Q: How do I find space in my schedule for orchestra as an elective?
A: This is truly the most common question. ETHS offers a wide variety of electives and finding time to explore them all can seem like an impossible chore as a freshman. Here are some tips:

1. Map out your entire four years of required classes, using the four-year course planning worksheet as a guide. You should notice that the Junior and Senior years are much more open to possible electives than the Freshman and Sophomore years. While continuing to play a musical instrument is an ongoing experience, it is possible to put some course sequences off until later, when there is more time to take them. Check out this Four Year Course Planning Worksheet! (

2. Consider taking some required or elective classes in Summer School after your freshman year or during your 4 years at ETHS. Many students who are also interested in other elective classes take them during summer school so that they can continue with these course sequences once their schedules open up junior or senior years.

There may be other ways to adjust your individual schedules based on your class choices in the required subjects, as well. If you want to discuss your particular situation, please email me at:
In closing, we want to thank you for your support of music education in your child’s life. Music is a unique and life-long experience for us all, and we look forward to sharing in that experience with you over the next four years!


     -- Mr. Ausberto Acevedo

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