Barking and Dagenhamís Community Music Service (CMS), which
operates in an area of high socio-economic disadvantage, continued
with its policy of free loan of instruments and opportunities
to play in CMS ensembles without charge. So there was no obstacle
to inclusive access. In addition to provision of opportunities
to experience a broad range of musics, the CMS has supplied us
with a detailed exposition of what it required on a term by term
basis by way of minimum instrumental standards. They were drawn-up
for woodwind, brass and strings and included all the rigour of
the Common Approach (the instrumental and vocal curriculum produced
by FMS, NAME, MEC and the RCM) programmes of work. To follow the
standards through, three whole day workshops were held for over
240 beginners, and six starter ensembles (two strings, two woodwind
and two brass) were under way by the following week. The emphasis
was on general musicianship (aural, vocal and internalising through
copy back) and instrumental awareness. Those in the beginner groups
progressed to elementary ensembles with new starter groups taking
off early in 2002.
As part of the drive to support and motivate pupils to stay with
music beyond the transfer to the secondary education phase, an
experienced and highly respected jazz musician and educator was
appointed; among other things to promote primary and secondary
links and develop jazz ensembles and big bands. Again by appointing
specialist educators, Indian, African and Gospel musics were introduced
at all key stages. So, with continuing close and fruitful links
with the London Symphony Orchestra, the CMS involvement of professional
musicians in schools music education was considerable.
big event for the Caerphilly Music and Arts Service was
the bringing together of all the Authoritys arts related
activities in one Division and in the same building, which also
accommodated storage space for music and instruments, a curriculum
and CD resource library, a primary classroom percussion library
(including equipment for loan), a suite of three new practice/teaching
rooms, a new percussion studio complete with equipment
- a new music technology suite and a new multi purpose rehearsal
and performance studio for drama and music.
The Services core tuition to schools continued to be provided
free of charge (though most schools passed a small charge to parents
to enable their pupils to experience a broad music curriculum)
as was the loan of instruments. Of the total school population,
30 per cent were engaged in music activities outside the curriculum.
The range and scope of INSET was impressive and was underpinned
by the joint advisory service covering Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil
and Rhonda Cynan Taff. A PRS Foundation grant helped to support
INSET for teachers that followed a songwriting project in schools,
which explored accompaniment to the songs composed by pupils.
The training was targeted at teachers with limited musical skills;
and a handbook was produced to accompany the sessions.
World, classical chamber and British traditional musics were promoted
through performance and workshops lead by professional musicians
and dancers. Schools were strongly encouraged to include all pupils
in music activities; indeed many of the pupils involved in projects
and workshops had been identified as having learning difficulties.
And with a grant from the Arts Council of Wales arts workshops,
including a music residency, to promote social inclusion for people
with mental health problems were funded for a three-year period.
Two music groups were already working towards performance and
making a recording.
Jointly with the youth service and with the aid of another PRS
Foundation grant a professional composer and a mobile youth unit,
200 young people working in small groups composed music using
music technology. Rock music projects and courses, including public
performances and recording were also initiated in the year.
and Ynys Mon LEAs produced a special needs music/communication
themed CD and handbook entitled Different Coloured
for free distribution to all schools, which addressed several
communication issues through fun vocal activities. The publication
was in bi-lingual format and was already widely used in special
schools, SEN units and nurseries throughout Wales.
With the purchase of more celtic harps, it was possible to extend
the three-year free loan to schools scheme. The two LEAs
commitment to Welsh music traditions was matched by provision
of rock workshops and an exciting new programme of jazz workshops
which apparently gave equal joy to pupil performers and observing
teachers. Indeed, music performance and composition opportunities
abounded for pupils and students in a range of genres including
chamber and brass band music, which, in a sense, exemplified the
Authorities enthusiasm for finding the right balance between
"catering" for the needs of beginners at the base of
the provision pyramid and keeping pace with the aspirations of
the "pinnacle" players. The decision to maintain a pool
of 2,500 instruments on free loan for two years (followed by an
assisted purchase scheme) clearly helped fuel that enthusiasm.
Yet another example of vital developments facilitated by the Welsh
Assemblys Music Development Fund, was the long overdue introduction
of professional development provision for peripatetic tutors.
Finally, we were shown examples of a remarkably large number
of contributions from professional musicians, which were invaluable
in urging and enthusing young performers both to continue with
their chosen instrument and to compose.
Hampshire Music Service (HMS) has to provide for a very
large Authority. The demands made upon it necessitated an early
revision of its long-term strategic plan. Of the 540 schools,
85 per cent entered into service level agreements, and the number
of teaching hours purchased was double the projection for the
year. The HMS website (www.hants.gov.uk/education/hms)
was further developed and, unsurprisingly given the high quality
of its content (and ease of access), proved to be very popular
Specifically praised by OfSTED, the Primary Music Curriculum
Project was accessed by all 450 primary schools. Interestingly,
primary heads endorsed the central retention of a budget to fund
the project which enabled the Service to provide every primary
school with an extensive range of support, development opportunities
and resources we applaud especially the professional development
opportunities for newly qualified teachers and non-specialist
music managers afforded by that means.
The year also saw a major expansion of the extended curriculum
and world music provision comprising a long-term jazz project
(which, inter alia, should be of lasting benefit to the four jazz
ensembles), new resources and repertoire for the Rock Academy,
two new steel pan centres and a two-day world music festival distinguished
by participation by infant school pupils to a level and standard
which exceeded everyones expectation.
A "health check" list was drawn up for all schools.
By checking against criteria (eg approach to training, ICT, schemes
of work, accommodation, instrumental provision, etc) each school
could evaluate its own provision against the average across the
The range and scope of musician involvement with county ensembles
and teachers was impressive. We look forward to receiving evidence
of a similar level of involvement in ordinary classroom situations.
And , finally, the Service succeeded in increasing access to music-making
opportunities for pupils in special schools. .
year we noted that North Lanarkshire were demonstrating
the most consistent commitment to music education of all
authorities in Scotland. They also spring surprises: who would
have expected the education department, which over the past
years has hosted successful Battle of the Bands rock
festivals (drawing in local radio stations as well as parents
teachers) to embark on a three-year project with Scottish Opera
in four secondary schools exploring the music of Wagner and The
In addition to a full range of Authority-wide orchestras and ensembles,
area/school-based choral and instrumental groups were being established
to meet the demand from all 26 secondary, 130 primary and 10 special
schools. That measure and others were designed to enable the Authority
to implement an ambitious new venture. North Lanarkshire (and
at least one of their predecessor authorities) had an established
policy of involving the wider adult community in the music performed
by pupils and students. The new strategy was to reverse that approach
by making available to the wider community the skills of school
staffs, involving national and local community music groups in
the planning and delivery and giving each of the fourteen area
music groups a community focus for the development and enhancement
of music skills. Communities which have been insular for geographical,
religious or social reasons should thus have opportunity to raise
levels of achievement and self-esteem. Already, in this, the first
year, over 1300 pupils from across North Lanarkshire participated
weekly in the programme. We look forward to next years progress
had an extremely busy year. We note in particular the
commissioning and production of a new opera for 300 young singers
and soloists, actors, the County Youth Orchestra and County Dance
appointment of a vocal development officer tasked to encourage
boys to sing, and out of that a new, boys treble choir was created.
And appropriate INSET was provided for schools;
a project bringing together music service instrumental staff and
musicians from the professional orchestra ViVA, for interaction
and shared performances for school audiences in the county;
joint working with the Royal Northern College of Music out of
which ten new student brass quintets were formed;
launch of four rock and pop centres both within and extra to the
16 regional music centres; and collaboration with Rock School;
appointment of a contemporary music officer to help raise and
sustain the profile of live and locally produced, original contemporary
14 residential music courses ranging from beginners to advanced
in a variety of genres;
ante-natal music classes;
facilitating of music-making for a range of adult music aggregations
by providing accommodation, resources and general support.
And finally, one of the most telling of all statistics: the Music
Service provided tuition to 13 per cent of the school population,
which by any standard is high!
were told by OfSTED that they had "a very good music service".
The submission before us amply bore that conclusion out. We refer
first to those features of the County Music Services year
that were not central concerns of OfSTED, though very much in
furtherance of good lifelong learning policy and practice.
As part of the INSET programme taster sessions were introduced
for teachers to enable them to plan the extension of their work
in the coming academic year into the youth service, adult education
and community education, (including activities covering pre-school),
and across different genres of music-making folk, jazz
and African drumming. Saturday workshops for brass players of
all ages were added to by new introductory sessions for adult
clarinettists and saxophonists (for learning and re-learning
purposes) which by mid-year had become weekly Saturday events.
A high proportion of the INSET provision covered subjects requested
by teachers and County Music Service staff following consultation;
and the Service was rightly proud of the fact that not only was
INSET for all staff now paid for as part of their pay and conditions,
but all teachers were now on permanent contracts with teachers
pay and conditions, either as full-time or a proportion of full-time.
Furthermore, a full-time senior and four part-time music therapists
Provision of instruments was generous and tutors were provided
for all types.
Finally, we cannot help but acknowledge that month by month, throughout
the year, the CMS has been responsible for more new initiatives
than we have seen for very many years!
the beginning of the year Southamptons primary school
pupils were already recipients of the Governments pledge
that any interested primary-age pupil should have opportunity
to learn to play an instrument. That augured well for the 23 diverse
ensembles provided by the Music Service for pupils and students
based on a full pyramid structure.
Last year we singled out for special mention, the Authoritys
commitment to meeting the needs of those with disability and/or
SEN. It is pleasing to note that there was no let up in that level
The growth in numbers of peripatetic staff (from10.4 FTEs in 1997
to 17.5 in 2001) and an investment of over £100,000 in new
instruments of course facilitated a year on year increase in the
number of children and young people learning to play an instrument.
An investment of £20,000 in a secondary school music department
lead to the creation of a music technology teaching and learning
research base. That doubled-up as a venue for other staff to observe
high quality teaching; the equipment was also used to create three
support CD Roms that were circulated free to other secondary music
departments in the City.
While structural change often has high nuisance value, the merging
of education and leisure departments has the potential for wholly
beneficial development in music education, not least in increasing
access opportunities across the board. It is good to see that
this practical approach to the promotion of inclusion was already
bearing fruit in Southampton.
We received evidence that all musics benefited from the largest
ever commitment by the LEA to the involvement of professional