MUSIC FUNDING – STICKING PLASTER TO COVER A GAPING WOUND
Commenting on the announcement that the Government is to make £300 million available to support music in a number of hubs across the country, Chris Keates General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers' union in the UK, said
"Whilst these days any funding for educational provision is welcome, this amount is nothing more than a sticking plaster being used to cover a gaping wound.
"Since 2010, music and other creative subjects have been relentlessly driven out and the curriculum narrowed as schools give priority to the subjects that will affect their rankings in performance tables.
"As a result, thousands of children, particularly from disadvantaged backgrounds, have been denied the opportunity to develop their musical talents, specialist music teachers have lost their jobs and local authority music services have been decimated.
"Access to music lessons across the country is now largely based on parents' ability to pay.
"What has happened to music provision in schools is yet another example of government policies which deny children their entitlement to a broad based national curriculum and which have driven inequality across schools.
"However, this investment, limited as it is, appears to be at least a recognition of the need to reverse the damaging policies of the Cameron and Gove years but there is a long way to go, and far more investment needed, before the legacy of deep inequality, rife across the system, is addressed and schools work for everyone."