UK pumps extra £300 million into music teaching

The Government will sustain music hubs in schools over the next four years at a cost of £300 million – up from £271m for the past four years.

The hubs are designed to draw a wider demographic spectrum into playing instruments, singing in choirs and other musical activities, as well as providing casual employment for music teachers in deprived parts of the country.

Critics call them a patchwork solution, but they fill some of the wasteland left by local authority cuts.

More facts here.

child clarinet

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  • Patchwork is a good description. From what I observed in our authority there has been a rise in more senior posts at the expense of those who actually deliver the musical education. As a consequence all of the instrumental and ensemble teachers will have their pay substantially reduced to that of teaching assistant status. This will do nothing to recruit well qualified practitioners and my own wife will now seek work as a teaching assistant in a primary school (she has both graduate music qualifications and PGCE status).
    It’s arguably better to continue with the notion of hubs (whatever that means) instead of the piecemeal methods before this change but the pay alone (around 12k pa at best) is hardly an incentive.
    There has also been a marked decline in take-up, mostly caused by the fragmentation of the school network by academy status. These academies have invariably gone it alone and sourced their own arrangements outside of the hub network.
    Pleasing to see a commitment but I’m not convinced of the method. Time will tell.

  • Worth noting that the amount invested for 2007-11 was £332 million. So there’s still a lot less funding now than compared with then.

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