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How to Set Up Sound and Lights for a School Assembly


If you, the principal, PTA parent, or custodian, are preparing for an important school assembly, you will want to be sure your stage, lights, and audio are ready for the event. If the stage is full of boxes and randomly stored items, it may be distracting and look unprofessional. Obviously, proper lighting and a working P.A. system are important to check as well. 


STAGE

If you are scheduling an outside assembly company (interestingly, some schools call assemblies “field trips” even when they are on school property) those assembly performers may require plenty of space on the stage. Whether a school has a cafeteria, MPR, or auditorium, our assembly company presenters can perform either on a stage or on the floor. If you need the event speaker to hold their assembly outdoors, check with them first to see if that is technically possible for their show. 


LIGHTING

We have visited thousands of schools (mostly in California). Ironically, we often find that the darkest place in the school is on the stage. We understand that with limited funds and resources, the school stage is the last priority for installing new light bulbs. However, if your school custodian has a moment and a couple of spare light bulbs, it’s a great idea to replace a few burnt-out stage lights. If the lights are pointed in the wrong direction aim them properly, if possible.


AUDIO

We bring our own state-of-the-art sound system because not all schools have a good P.A. However, for other school presenters, test your microphone. Check the volume, mic battery (if it is wireless), etc. I could write an entire book about setting up the proper sound for a school assembly – proper equalization (tone), speaker placement, and more, but the above is the basic task before a presentation. 



After performing at thousands of schools, we have definitely observed that good lighting and audio really do make a difference in how well students receive the information presented. I suspect lighting, audio, and even the look of the space. are also a factor in everyday classroom teacher presentations. In any case, if you have hired outside assembly presenters, it’s a good idea to email them to ask for their technical requirements. We are more self-sufficient than most presenters; all we ask for is the use of a table. 

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