There are several people you have to get on board including: superintendent, principal(s), head of the business office, school board president and other board members. I never went behind anyone's back and always followed the chain of command. I kept all involved individuals in the loop of everything as I always cc'd everything I sent to everyone involved so that it was a collective effort.
My approach was very non-confrontational and I did "my homework" by collecting all the facts I needed to support why the band program needed new instruments. The then high school director very effectively worked with me behind the scenes as he did the legwork with getting bids and lists of instruments he and I needed as well and it culminated in me giving a presentation before the entire school board along with documentation I handed out to everyone at a board meeting. The board and superintendent unanimously approved for everything I and the high school director asked for.
If you wish, I'll be glad to e-mail to you the letters I sent to the former superintendent along with the documentation and presentation I put together that you're welcome to recycle if it helps your situation. It'll give you a place to start and you can give it a try as well as you'll see immediately my approach and why it was so effective.
The superintendent is the keystone. For me (us), once I got the superintendent on board everything fell into place and I rigorously followed the chain of command and never ever went above anyone's head. It can be done as I did it. (I'm now retired).
If you'd like me to e-mail you copies of my letters and documents I created for that project, you (and anyone else who wants to) can e-mail me at:
I'll be glad to send you what I and the high school director put together.
: I'm beyond frustrated with my district's lack
: of support for and understanding of the
: arts. They want us to build great programs,
: but don't provide the funding or facilities
: to make it happen. We're fundraising to
: afford our bus to UIL.
: Since I arrived here a few years ago the
: band has been very successful. Multiple kids
: have made Region, many on to Area. Several
: went to TSSEC last year. Good scores at UIL.
: Numbers have increased every year, and
: budget keeps dropping. I've had to beg and
: borrow instruments from everywhere to outfit
: my tubas and percussion.
: If you have a very supportive
: district/admin, especially where finances
: are concerned, how did you get them to see
: the light?