Music Theory Istructor

The Merit School of Music - Chicago, Illinois

Job Category: Faculty

Job Type: Paid

Job Term: Part Time

Compensation: $40 - $80 per hour commensurate with experience

Application Deadline: July 28, 2024

About Our Organization

Merit School of Music is a community music school in Chicago's West Loop. Our primary goals are to help young people transform their lives and experience personal growth through music by providing access to sustained participation. For more than 40 years, we have been home to a diverse community of talented young musicians and have acted as a springboard for achieving full musical and personal potential. Our 125 passionate and experienced teaching artists provide access to high-quality music education, engaging over 3,000 students annually at our downtown location and in area schools and community centers.

Our students, who reflect the socioeconomic and ethnic diversity of Chicago, have the rare opportunity to learn together, dream together, teach each other, and broaden their horizons as they build inspiring lives through music. Merit develops musicians and provides young people with the tools they need to excel in life, with virtually 100 percent of our graduates going on to conservatory or college.

Merit School of Music is committed to building a world where historically underrepresented groups can access quality music education. Simultaneously, Merit is continually working towards becoming an organization that truly reflects the city's demographics and the students we serve. Merit is dedicated to being an inclusive, diverse, equitable, and anti-racist organization and continually examining our efforts in this area.

Job Summary

Merit School of Music seeks a Music Theory Instructor to teach Music Theory Group Classes in our Alice S. Pfalzer Tuition-free Conservatory Program (TFC). This regular part-time position runs from Saturday, September 14, 2024, through Sunday, April 6, 2025, and will constitute about four hours of work per week. Students in the TFC program are at intermediate to highly advanced levels in grades 6 to 12.

The Music Theory Instructor reports to the Piano, Voice, and Guitar Program Director.


Responsibilities of Music Theory Instructor include, but are not limited to:
• Delivering high-quality instruction to students in weekly classes
• Communicating with on-site Merit theory teachers and other conservatory faculty to determine individual student needs and goals
• Participating in Merit faculty meetings and department meetings
• Complete student attendance during each class
• Corresponding with Merit staff and students/families in a timely fashion
• Other projects as assigned

Job Qualifications & Requirements

The ideal candidate would possess the following qualifications:
• Proven success teaching music theory at various skill levels, from beginner through intermediate to advanced
• Strong classroom management skills
• Ability to collaborate and work well with colleagues and administrators
• Flexible and adaptive disposition
• A high level of personal musicianship

Educational Requirements
Bachelor's degree in music or equivalent experience/training

Additional Details

• Saturdays, September 14, 2024 to Saturday, April 5, 2025
o 45-minute classes, scheduled for 24 Saturdays during the year
o Classes occur between 8 am and 2:30 pm. See below for class times:
 8:00-8:45 am
 8:50-9:35 am
 12:45-1:30 pm
 1:35-2:20 pm
o Ideal candidates will be available to teach 3-4 classes weekly
o Conservatory Graduation takes place on Sunday, April 6, 2025

Other Information

• Hourly base rates are calculated using a proprietary method that considers years of experience, recruitment/retention skills, studio size, education, and established success as a teacher.
o Base rates range from $40 to $80 per hour for private lessons, with an additional $2.00 per hour added to the base rate for group classes.
o Large ensembles pay 1.5x the group class rate.
o Full-time faculty (780 annual teaching hours) qualify for insurance benefits. 401K eligibility begins at 500 annual teaching hours.

How to Apply

To apply, please upload your resume detailing your relevant experience and qualifications for this role using this link. Applications will be accepted through July 28, 2024. Materials should be compatible with Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat PDF. Applicants will not receive confirmation of receipt of their materials. Further guidance and updates about the hiring process will arrive by e-mail, with interviews provided for finalists.

ALAANA/BIPOC people, trans and gender-nonconforming people, and women are encouraged to apply.

For more information about the Merit School of Music, please visit

Merit School of Music is committed to enhancing the diversity of our musical community, recognizing that by providing a diverse, equitable, and inclusive learning environment for our students, we are preparing them for personal and professional success in an increasingly multicultural and global society. The Merit community recognizes its responsibility to create and sustain a learning and working environment where difference is valued and equity and inclusion are practiced.