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Re: Incoming beginner students
I teach at a large 2C middle school and we were in exactly the same boat. Our numbers were DREADFUL and scary for incoming beginners. But, we managed to save it by going over to the elementary schools (after they had already picked other classes) and changing their minds by really hyping up how much fun we have and the trips we take. After seeing us, they all changed their minds and band was the place to be.
It might be worth a shot if your counselors will place children in band regardless of their original choice.