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Music ,
submitted by
Jen Busch

Lead Instructor

Job Title: Lead Instructor

Supervised by: Program Managers, Program Director

Supervises: n/a

Classification: Part-time, between 4-16 hours a week (average Instructor works 8 hours).

Hourly, Non-exempt


Intonation works with young people in Chicago to experience making music on their own terms, leading to personal growth and the enrichment of their communities.

Offered in partnership with schools, park districts, and community organizations, our year-round classes make music accessible to children by providing them with instruments, instruction, mentorship, and the chance to perform on stages across the city. Each Intonation student takes part in a personal and team approach to practice, setting goals and problem solving; and over time, they gain the confidence to take charge of their direction and seek out new experiences.


Intonation offers in-person and remote music learning programs. Our in-person programs take place at schools and park districts throughout the week (except Sunday) at varying times. A typical class has 12 students, a lead instructor and a co-instructor with most school-year classes meeting twice-weekly for an hour. Other classes vary in duration and frequency. Some classes meet as little as one hour per week, with other classes meeting up to four hours per week. Most of our instructors start by teaching one class/site, with hours increasing with experience. Our unique curriculum is tailored by age and skill level for students 3rd - 12th grade with varying musical abilities. Some have taken lessons before while many have never even picked up an instrument.

Our remote-learning programs take place via teleconference and are focused primarily on digital music production using Soundtrap, a digital music-making platform. We also utilize pre-recorded videos and live instrumentation in select remote learning offerings. All equipment needed for live and remote learning is provided to students.


Commitment, flexibility, reliability, patience, professionalism, and enthusiasm are essential for success in Intonation's physical and remote classroom spaces. Instructors will guide students in all aspects of forming and working together as an ensemble, in both remote and in-person settings: playing instruments (including DAWs), learning songs, setting up, tuning, songwriting, playing as a group, listening to one another, communicating effectively, supporting each other, stage presence and, of course, LIVE performance. In addition to teaching musical skills, Instructors will be expected to mentor students in social-emotional skills including teamwork, agency and leadership, community engagement and youth voice, nonviolent conflict resolution and goal setting. Instructors will mediate the occasional dispute and effectively manage a classroom.

Lead Instructors are relied upon to bring their experience and expertise to this leadership role.

They represent their class-specific teaching teams as the main point of contact with their Program Manager, acting as lead in class planning, workgroup activities, data collection, and equipment needs


Intonation Instructors report to their assigned Program Manager for team assignments, recruitment activities, classroom logistics, site relations, data collection, work groups, equipment needs, performances and time sheets.

Intonation Instructors report to the Program Director for curriculum, assessment, training and performance evaluation.

Instructors report to the Operations Director for HR procedures and compliance requirements


Instruction (approximately 60% of the position)

  • Develop positive relationships with student musicians and act in a professional manner
  • Manage the classroom space and create/maintain a safe, positive learning environment addressing challenges as they arise in real-time
  • Plan and deliver engaging lessons aligned with Intonation curriculum and guidelines; including guitar, bass, keyboard, drum set, voice, rhythm, digital instruments and ensemble playing while preparing students for performance. Plan and prepare for music research and recording projects
  • Plan and deliver focused social-emotional learning touchpoints, aligned with and integrated into Intonation curriculum and guidelines, to promote teamwork, agency and leadership, community engagement and youth voice, nonviolent conflict resolution and goal setting
  • Assist Assessment & Training Specialist in assessing student skills and abilities, and adapt instructional strategies accordingly.

Class Planning and Reporting: (approximately 25% of the position)

  • Lead instructors will lead weekly team meetings with their co-instructor and participate in regular portfolio check-ins with their respective Program Managers, driving forward group activities related to planning curriculum and class agendas, monitoring class progress, assessing technical needs, data collection (assessment, attendance, and registration) and sharing resources.
  • Lead Instructors are responsible for taking daily attendance for their classes and reporting any issues to their assigned Program Manager.
  • Lead Instructors are responsible for ensuring that their classes are culturally competent in line with Intonation’s established practices.

Logistics, Operations, Administration (approximately 10% of the position)

  • Report Equipment needs to Program Manager
  • Properly handle and manage all classroom materials and instruments (Remote and in-person), set up for each class
  • Leave every classroom ready for the next class. Clean instruments, pick up the room, discard trash after each class
  • Communicate effectively and professionally, and work cooperatively with all Intonation staff, students, parents, Program Managers and Site Contacts.
  • Actively participate in program evaluation, training, and professional development activities as informed by the Assessment and Training Specialist, program Managers, or Program Director
  • Respond to Intonation communications within one business day.

Professional Development (approximately 5% of the position)

  • Instructors are encouraged to take full advantage of professional development opportunities and aligned paid hours allotted for by the organization. Instructors take part in an annual reflection and goal setting process around their development as artists and educators. Intonation is dedicated to providing advancement opportunities in accordance with a demonstrated commitment to professional development from its team members.

Other (approximately <2% of the position)

  • Participate in annual gala and live performances
  • Protect the organization by keeping information confidential
  • Follow Instructors Code of Conduct
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


  • Commit to teach with Intonation for at least one school year
  • Commit to continual improvement and growth as an instructor.


  • Musical teaching experience with youth
  • Proficiency on two or more of the following instruments: Electric Guitar, Electric Bass, Drum Set, Electric Keyboard, Vocals, Electronic instruments or Digital or Audio Workstations
  • Trained (or willingness to receive training within the first school year) in culturally competent youth development
  • Experience, passion, for working with diverse communities, especially Black and Latinx youth
  • Experience with Youth Development or Mentorship a strong plus
  • Strong communication skills (verbal, written, oral) and classroom management ability
  • Ability to make confident independent decisions
  • Flexible, Organized, Reliable, Enthusiastic, Patient, Self-Starter
  • Strong interpersonal skills and experience working with a variety of personalities
  • Web literate and proficient use of Gmail, Google Drive, Google Docs and Social Media.


  • Intonation is currently working remotely and taking all necessary precautions due to COVID-19, however we are planning to transition back to in-person work in the coming months. This position will require in-person work at our sites.
  • Travel to various environments is required: an office, school buildings, park district field house. Space might not be fully accessible
  • Access to a car and a clean driving record is helpful
  • Applicants must undergo background checks, fingerprinting, mandated reporter training, and other related tasks as necessitated by compliance with program partners and funders
  • This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, scanners, filing cabinets
  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear. The employee frequently is required to stand; walk; use hands to operate office equipment. The employee must frequently lift and/or move objects up to 25 pounds and occasionally lift and/or move objects up to 50 pounds
  • Evening and weekend work are regularly required as the schedule is often determined by the shifting needs of the organization
  • Workplace is a smoke- and drug-free environment
  • Equal Employment Opportunity: It has been and will continue to be the policy of Intonation to be fair and impartial in all of its relations with its employees and applicants for employment and to make all employment-related decisions without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex, disability, or any other categories protected by federal, state, or local law. This policy applies to recruitment, hiring, training, promotion, and all other personnel actions and conditions of employment such as compensation, benefits, layoffs and reinstatements, training, tuition assistance, and disciplinary measures. Decisions regarding employment and promotion will be based solely only upon valid job- related factors
  • Any employees with questions or concerns about any type of discrimination in the workplace are encouraged to bring these issues to the attention of Intonation staff. Employees can raise concerns and make reports without fear of reprisal. Anyone found to be engaging in any type of unlawful discrimination will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.


  • Starts at $25.50/hr, commensurate with experience
  • 401(k) available


● Submit cover letter and resume to

● Women, BIPOC, Bronzeville residents and individuals with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply

● Please write your name (Last, First) in the subject line of your email. Incomplete applications will not be accepted. Position begins as soon as possible. NO PHONE CALLS PLEASE.

Job Type: Permanent
Location: Chicago, IL