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Music ,
submitted by
Andrew Levine

Choir Director

Merit School of Music seeks a highly qualified candidate for the position of Choir Director beginning in December 2023. The successful candidate will teach 4 hours of choir instruction at one Merit Music in Communities site, potentially adding other work as it becomes available. Merit Music in Communities programs take place at Chicago Public Schools, community sites, and neighboring school districts. An accompanist will be provided at all sites.

Organization Overview

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.

Reporting Relationship

The Choir Director reports to the Piano, Voice, and Guitar Program Director.

Job Responsibilities

Responsibilities of the Choir Director include, but are not limited to:

• Deliver music instruction commensurate with Merit's curricula, teaching philosophy, mission, and values

• Teach weekly choir rehearsals to students in 2nd – 8th grade

• Prepare students for performances two to three times per year

• Follow Merit's benchmarks for large ensemble instruction

• Support students' growth through Merit's continuum of programming

• Participate in regular parent engagement activities

• Complete student attendance during each class or rehearsal

• Attend Merit faculty meetings and departmental meetings

• Other projects as assigned

Personal Skills/Attributes/Qualifications

The ideal candidate would possess the following qualifications:

• Demonstrated success teaching beginning and intermediate choir to similar age groups

(3rd – 8th grade)

• Strong classroom management skills

• A high level of personal musicianship

• Experience working with students of diverse backgrounds

• Ability to collaborate, communicate effectively, and work well with faculty, colleagues, and administrators

• Punctual, professional, and collegial

• The ability to travel via car or public transportation

• Demonstrable commitment to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Antiracism work

Educational Requirements

Bachelor's degree in music or equivalent experience/training


• Monday/Wednesdays OR Tuesday/Thursdays

o Choir 1: 4:00-4:45 pm

o Choir 2: 4:45-5:30 pm

Please note that these classes are scheduled to take place in person at Merit's partner school in Chicago's Auburn Gresham neighborhood.

Compensation and Application

• 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 Off-site faculty are reimbursed for mileage as calculated from Merit's main campus.

o Full-time faculty (780 annual teaching hours) qualify for insurance benefits. 401K eligibility begins at 500 annual teaching hours.

To apply, please upload your resume detailing your relevant experience and qualifications for this role using this link. Applications will be accepted through October 31st. 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 that it is responsible for creating and sustaining a learning and working environment where difference is valued and equity and inclusion are practiced.

Job Type: Permanent
Location: Chicago, IL