You can "woe is me" and "these kids" all you want - but the fact is, our job is to sell our programs, and being elitist or handwaving off our responsibility here doesn't help anything. It's not our student's fault that they've been raised in an environment that emphasizes instant results and gratification. You can complain about it, OR you can overcome it.
So kids want something fun. Great. What are you doing to make band fun? How are you showcasing the fun? What can kids do besides work, work, work, and stand outside in the summer on the parking lot? Do you do any social activities? Have a cookout? Have a water park day? Water balloon/water gun fight? Ice cream social? What can do you do that's FUN during summer band that keeps kids coming back for more?
Same thing with the parents. How often do you meet with the MS band parents? How often do you speak with the elementary parents? They hear a dozen times a year from counselors about "college prep" and "advanced courses" and "dual credit" and you think ONE meeting with you where you show a video and have a Q&A is enough?
SELL the program. SELL its value. SELL its fun. 90% of your kids couldn't care less about honor band. That's YOUR ego being stroked. They care a little bit about SMC - but again, that's a trip to San Antonio in the middle of the school year. That's FUN.
Some kids live for competition. Some kids live for excellence. But most of our kids will do what their friends do. Like Dr. Tim says - 20% of our population is leaders - 10% each in a positive or negative direction. You have to get that 80% to want to be there. They'll buy in if you make it fun.