Band at St. John Brebeuf School

Our band program is a long-established tradition at SJB School. Alumnae of our band have gone on to play at local private and public high schools and have continued to develop their musical skills well beyond graduation. 

The band instructor is Jesica Woody. Although she is new to SJB for the 2018-19 school year, she is an experienced band instructor. She has successfully established and re-established programs at several schools.

Below is a letter from Ms. Woody. To download this letter, please click here.

Hello St. John Brebeuf Families,

My name is Jesica Woody and I am excited to introduce myself as your new Band Director!  I am looking forward to continuing the tradition of a strong band program at St. John Brebeuf School.  I am happy to share the following information about myself and our plans for the program.

First, a little information about me…

My  Background:  I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance from DePaul University where I studied with Larry Combs (retired Principal Clarinetist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra).  I have a Master’s in Performance and Pedagogy from Northern Illinois University and I received my Teaching Certification (Elementary Ed. with an Endorsement for Middle School Music) from National-Louis University.

Teaching Experience:  I’ve been teaching band in the Northwest Suburbs for the last 17 years.  I’ve taught at St. Raymond’s in Mt. Prospect, East Maine School District in Niles, Holy Cross School in Deerfield, St. Catherine’s in Glenview, and most recently, at School of St. Mary in Lake Forest.

Second, a bit of information about band…

Who Can Sign Up for Band:  Any student who will be in the 4th-8th Grade during the 2018-19 school year.

Joining band is a three step process.  

Step1:  Students will come to a demonstration day to see and hear the various instruments that they can start on in band – flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, baritone & percussion.  

Step 2:  Students will be fitted (try out instruments) for an instrument that suits their physical characteristics.  

Step 3:  Parents will come to a band sign up night to register their child for band/rent an instrument.

Where/When:  Lessons will be held at St. John Brebeuf School once per week on Tuesdays.  Students would be scheduled into small groups for lessons on like instruments. Band lessons are a pull out program. They are approximately 30 minutes and are scheduled on a rotational basis so that students are not pulled out of the same part of class more than every 5-8 weeks. Additionally, full band rehearsals for returning students will be added before school (on Tuesdays) for roughly 45 minutes before the bell rings. Beginners will meet for about 40 minutes for full group rehearsals (on Tuesdays) after school. Full group practices will begin after we have a number of weeks of small group lessons under our belts.

Fees:    Tuition for band is $50.00/month. For beginning students, I do ask for a four month commitment. This will give your musician several months (Sept.-Dec.) to experience lessons, rehearsals as well as a Christmas Concert. Students benefit from a short term commitment so they can experience the full cycle of band before making any decisions on further instruction. In January, if you wish to continue, you would go on a month-to-month basis and the payments would be $50.00/month.

Annual (once per year) Activity Fee:  $55.00 - There is no Band budget at St. John Brebeuf. Rather than doing various fund-raising activities we will ask families for an annual Band Activity Fee to cover general expenses (band music, contest fees, solos, school inst. maintenance, minor supplies, etc.).  

Getting an Instrument:  If you need to obtain an instrument I recommend Quinlan & Fabish Music Co. They are a reputable company that rents/sells high quality student instruments that stand up to student use. They offer a rent- to-own program at very reasonable, competitive rates. A feature of their rental program that I really like is the maintenance/replacement coverage as it protects against theft, loss, and damage. Also if your instrument would ever need repair or adjustment, there is a representative from the company that would visit us weekly and take instruments in that might need servicing. Additionally, he would bring out a loaner instrument for your child to use in the event it does need to go into the shop. I recommend and have used Quinlan & Fabish as my instrumental rental company for over 20 years and have grown to trust them because I know they are honest and do right by the families that I work with.

For your convenience, Quinlan & Fabish will be at the band sign up night at school.  At the sign up night you can speak with me, get more information, rent an instrument and get any supplies you might need for start-up.

Performance Commitments:  We will have three main performance goals for band during the year. The first is our Christmas Concert in December. The Second is a Solo Festival in March or April & third, our Spring Concert in May. Additionally, I like to bring in other experienced band directors to do clinics with our students. It is beneficial for students to hear and get input from other master teachers in our area as a part of their musical education. Dates of our events our yet to be determined, but I will get those to you as soon as possible.

I hope you will consider this valuable opportunity for your child. I am excited about of fostering a strong instrumental music program at St. John Brebeuf School. Thank you for considering music education as an important part of your child’s overall education!


Jesica Woody, Band Director
St. John Brebeuf School   


St. John Brebeuf School


8301 N. Harlem Ave.

Niles, IL 60714

(847) 966-3266

Office Hours:

Monday - Friday:  8:00 am - 3:30 pm



Registration is now open for the 2021-2022 school year!


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3:00 pm - 6:00 pm


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