No fewer than 36 recommendations have been put forward to the government regarding improving or maintaining the quality of music education in schools as part of the Henley Review.
Published yesterday (February 7th), the main points highlighted by the report include encouraging more professional or graduate musicians to help deliver the music curriculum in schools and to bridge the divide between wealthier children with access to great musical education and children in more disadvantaged areas.
And as a direct result of the review, education secretary Michael Gove has announced that the £82.5 million ring-fenced musical education grant will be continued for the 2011-12 financial year.
Other recommendations made in the report by Darren Henley, managing director of Classic FM, include an increase in the amount of time dedicated to training primary school teachers in the subject.
The review also said that the government should introduce a new qualification for music educators, which would professionalise and acknowledge their role in and out of school.
Primarily delivered through in-post training and continuous professional development, musicians who gain this new qualification would be regarded as Qualified Music Educators, the report added.
Mr Gove has promised that consultations will take place with all the relevant bodies to assess the practicability of these recommendations.
Mr Henley also said that there was a need for conservatoires to work with Teach First to create a Teach Music First programme, which enables the best musicians to spend two years teaching in schools before they move onto their performance career.
He then welcomed the government’s commitment to music education.
“This is a real opportunity for everyone involved in working in music to help to ensure that we have a generation of children who are both musically literate and music lovers,” Mr Henley said.
“We want to ensure that the music education that every child receives is excellent in every way. And we want to make it possible for every child to be able to progress through a music education system that enables them to achieve their full musical potential.”
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