LOCAL EDUCATION AUTHORITY MUSIC
have been responsible for a number exciting initiatives which came into
being too late to be taken into account for this year's awards. They
have, however, been responsible for other initiatives that have done
much to enrich the musical life of pupils in the area. Notable among
these was a week-long visit by Tommy Smith, the international tenor
and soprano sax star with members of the Scottish Jazz Orchestra. Workshops
were held with pupils in several schools and they led an INSET day for
the City's team of instrumental instructors.
too, did much to enrich their programme of work with a substantial number
of new initiatives, a very commendable range of INSET provision, a high
level of involvement of professional musicians in schools and joint
work with other LEAs and district councils in the County.
somewhat elliptical entry from Cambridgeshire was distinguished
by news of a promising new rock, pop and club music initiative which
includes the development of NVQs for excluded pupils in DJing and training
in rural promotions.
were delighted to receive evidence that the successful joint working
of the Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion LEAs has been maintained
with the result that this part of the Principality is blessed with first
rate provision; furthermore, the two LEAs have adopted action plans
which will include expenditure of £600,000 in future years to
improve the quality and quantity of centrally-held instruments.
have clearly consolidated the resurgence in music which we recognised
in 1998. We wonder if now might be the time to begin to draw on the
County's rich cultural roots, about which we have read little; after
all there is only one Cornwall!
one of the smaller authorities to submit this year, highlighted a particularly
imaginative staff development project for those involved in the delivery
of the curriculum for the very early years: "Rumble in the Jungle"
was a cross curricular initiative taking the form of a musical and including
the assignment of a musician from the Royal Scottish National Orchestra
to each nursery school. Early evaluation suggests this was a thoroughly
successful INSET project.
East Riding of Yorkshire Schools Music Service exploits to good
effect its links with the Early Music and Folk Festivals within its
area, and continued to develop its praiseworthy programme involving
Opera North working in special schools with a range of pupils with moderate
and severe learning difficulties.
Vocal and Choral Initiative, including the appointment of an animateur
and direct input into schools, has been responsible for some interesting
developments, including the study of Baroque and Renaissance works in
secondary schools. The Music Service has also formed two new string
orchestras and re-launched the Percussion Academy with £20,000
worth of new instruments; indeed there was a much needed expansion of
the instrumental hire scheme.
were heartened to receive a submission from Newcastle upon Tyne,
the first for many years, and hope that with the help of a large injection
of Standards Fund moneys the LEA will restore its support for music,
for example to the high quality level we applauded in 1988.
Music Trust was responsible for the organisation of an exciting research
project. Sponsored by Tate and Lyle, it involved an investigation into
the effects of a short music activity every day for pupils in seven
schools in years one and two (the National Music Council's website "MusicEd"
www.musiced.org.uk will be featuring this project).
their astonishing run of success in the NMC's Local Authority section
of this awards scheme, we were not surprised to receive a high quality
entry from North Lanarkshire qua education authority.
Indeed, it identified a series of ambitious plans for all pupils with
interest and commitment to become involved in school/area music groups
and ultimately authority-wide groups.
all-round quality of the North Somerset Music Service's provision
shown in their submission was such that we feel the time is ripe for
a touch more adventure!
Music Service has only existed since September 1999 and clearly has
much work to do; but we were impressed by the remarkably diverse range
of workshops conducted by professional musicians: they included African
drumming, Cuban music, early music, folk, Japanese percussion, harp
one of the smallest authorities participating this year, embarked on
several praiseworthy youth and community education projects. Organisation
of many of the courses and workshops is based on the principle that
young people should be allowed to engage in the arts and cultural activity
in a way that is meaningful to them and their lifestyles.
increased by 100% the number of visiting music teachers supporting music.
They also opened a second centre for young musicians and increased their
level of support for the London-wide Centre for Young Musicians at Morley
College. It seems to us that year on year this Authority's provision
is improving both quantitatively and qualitatively.
Schools First Concert Band and Schools Percussion Ensemble won several
awards for the quality of their performances.
together with many other LEAs, benefited from the larger Standards Fund.
They invested in a new Centre for Arts Education, which now provides
a permanent 'home' for the instrumental music service and the arts education
service. The year also saw a series of exciting new early years' music
developments, expansion of support for new technology, publication of
new materials to encourage the understanding and performance of world
musics, fruitful collaborations with other LEAs and the introduction
of programmes of music therapy in three special schools.