27 JUNE 2022
The Department for Education and Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport have released the refreshed National Plan for Music Education, titled ‘The power of music to change lives’
The music education sector has been waiting for the refreshed plan ahead of the next academic year.
West Sussex Music welcomed the plan while committing to examine the detail closely.
Key announcements in the plan include:
- Key Stages 1-3 should have at least one hour per week of ‘high quality’ curriculum music
- New funding worth £25 million, will be available, for schools to purchase musical instruments and equipment
- £79 million made available every year until 2025 for the Music Hubs programme
- Every school will be expected to have a designated music lead or head of department
- Every school should write and publish a ‘Music Development Plan’, including information on how music is staffed and funded
In their ministerial foreword to the plan, Minister for School Standards, Robin Walker MP and Minister for the Arts, Lord Parkinson state ‘Excellent music education opens opportunities, but it is not simply a means to an end: it is also an end in itself. It gives children and young people an opportunity to express themselves, to explore their creativity, to work hard at something, persevere and shine. These experiences and achievements stay with them and shape their lives.
That is why music is an essential part of a broad and ambitious curriculum for all pupils. It must not be the preserve of the privileged few. Music should be planned and taught as robustly as any other foundation curriculum subject, as exemplified in the Model Music Curriculum we published last year.’
Responding to the refreshed plan, WSM Chief Executive James Underwood said, ‘We’re pleased that the much-awaited refreshed National Plan for Music Education has been released. There is much in the plan we welcome, especially the statements around music being a fundamental part of the school curriculum. We believe that the Plan’s aspirations, however, need to be supported by a real commitment to improve ongoing funding for music education in schools, for music education hubs, and initial teacher training.”