Music education news & reports – UK-wide

This post will be updated each time we add music education reports and news which are UK-wide.

Music Education, Brexit and the Cost of Living Crisis: an Update From the General Secretary, September 2022
MU General Secretary Naomi Pohl looks at the union’s policy priorities and industrial strategy this autumn.

UK Music chief highlights need for music education as A-level results reveal rise in music students, August 2022
The head of UK Music, Jamie Njoku-Goodwin, is urging political leaders to ensure that music is at the heart of education, after A-level results reveal ‘welcome rise’ in music students.

REPORT: The Power of Music report & calls to actions, May 2022
A report from UK Music and Music for Dementia, sets out a vision for how to harness the potential of music to enhance health and wellbeing from cradle to grave and gives recommendations for a range of stakeholders including music educators.

Rocksteady Music School and Trinity College London mark a revolutionary new era for music education, February 2022
More primary school children have enrolled on Rocksteady Music Schools ‘exam-free’ music qualification than took A-level music last year.
Rocksteady Music School launches new national music qualification, September 2021
UK parents say the pandemic has changed their way of looking at schooling and assessments for their children.
UK’s future music ‘talent pipeline’ at risk A-level music decline, August 2021
A-level music education provided by state schools could completely disappear by 2033 as a result of an alarming year-on-year decline.
Music helped Britain survive lockdown, July 2021
UK Music publishes a major new survey that reveals the crucial role music played in helping people through Covid-19 lockdowns. 
Music education in UK schools devastated by pandemic ISM survey finds, December 2020
Students will lose out emotionally and academically, say teachers, as lessons and concerts are cut back for all age groups.
Practising a musical instrument is good for your mental health, July 2020
A poll of 2,000 UK adults who play an instrument found a staggering 89 per cent think playing music keeps them mentally balanced.
UK royal schools of music exam board urged to address colonial legacy, July 2020
Research reveals 99% of pieces on ABRSM’s syllabuses were by white composers.
Violinist Nicola Benedetti slams “gross undervaluation of music teachers” in the UK, March 2020
The Grammy-winning virtuoso highlighted the country’s treatment of music teachers and shared a touching tribute to her first violin tutor.
Brexit’s chilling threat to the music and creative industries, February 2020
Adam Behr on the chilling effect the government’s Brexit and immigration policies are now having on the UK’s music scene.
Officials call Brexit “a disaster for the British music scene”, February 2020
Post-Brexit immigration “will cut the legs off the bottom half of the music industry,” under a new points-based system to be introduced in 2021.
The UK music industry boosts our economy and our wellbeing, January 2020
More must be done to protect grassroots venues, nurture the talent pipeline and ensure British talent isn’t stifled by the impact of Brexit, writes Conor McGinn MP.
Value of UK music rises to £5.2bn despite Brexit fears, November 2019
Employment hits an all-time high and Britney Spears delivers a boost to the Yorkshire and Humber economy.
Creativity ‘undervalued’ in music education, October 2019
System offers ‘no consistent progression routes’ for young composers, putting future of profession at risk, new survey suggests.
BBC launches music education campaign, September 2019
Bring the Noise is designed to inspire children to become musicians and discover the joys of music making.
New PM must support UK music industry and music education, July 2019
UK Music CEO, Michael Dugher, calls on the new PM to take swift action on a range of challenges facing the UK music industry.
Exchanging Notes research prompts a media flurry over ‘Stormzy vs Mozart’ debate, June 2019
See Music Education Reports England for links to the research
Discrimination against urban music persists in UK says report to MPs, March 2019
Institutionalised racism continues to affect the live sector, committee told.
Why the crisis in music education is a crisis for all, February 2019
Music teaching’s an easy target and first for the chop when budgets are squeezed. We investigate a misguided approach that will have catastrophic consequences for our culture.
Cultural sector continues to grow faster than the UK economy, December 2018
The economic output from the cultural sector is now just under £30bn, having grown by 7.3% in one year.

Poorer children priced out of learning to play musical instruments, November 2018

New research shows creativity will become even more important to the growth of jobs between now and 2030, November 2018

Chancellor urged to ‘urgently review’ music education, October 2018
Warning that the decline of music in schools could jeopardise the UK’s multi-billion-pound music industry.

House of Lords debate on the state of music education in schools, October 2018

Music in society inquiry October 2018-March 2019

MU launches four surveys as part of new UK music education research project, July 2018

News consortium forms to address crisis in music education, April 2018
It features four of the UK’s main access-to-music organisations – Creative United, OHMI, Drake Music and OpenUp Music – who want to make musical instruments more widely available to aspiring young musicians – particularly to disabled people.

Research figures – related

Teaching music in school ‘ticking boxes’ as numbers fall in Wales, November 2018
The number of pupils in Wales studying music at A-level has halved in 10 years while GCSE entries have seen a 40% drop.
Drop in pupils getting music tuition in Scottish schools, November 2018
The number of children receiving musical instrument tuition in Scotland’s schools has dropped by more than 1,200 over the past year.
Music education in England at significant risk of disappearing, new University of Sussex research reveals, October 2018
Music disappearing from curriculum in England, October 2018
Fewer schools in England offering subject at A-level and fewer pupils taking it at GCSE.
Schools providing compulsory music at year 9 has halved in the last 6 years
Fears for the future of music lessons in schools in England, October 2018
Is EBacc affecting what students study at GCSE and A-level in England?, August 2018
Since 2013, the number of A-level entries in arts subjects in England, which include drama, music and art, has fallen by 14,000, almost 15%. While, entries in Stem subjects – science, technology, engineering and maths – have increased by 15,500, 6%.
Arts slashed as core subjects take over in England, August 2018
Latest figures for 2017 show that the time spent teaching music is down 11% at KS3, and 12% at KS4.
GCSE results in England confirm continued collapse of arts in schools, August 2018
Music entries down 7.4%, and performing and expressive arts entries down 41.4%
GCSE Results Day 2018 in England: uptake of creative subjects down by 10.2%, August 2018
Music A-level “in danger of disappearing from England’s state schools”, August 2018
The sharp warning from the Association of School and College Leaders comes as A-level data in England reveals the decline in entries for arts subjects has doubled in speed since last year.
Arts teacher numbers plummet by almost a quarter in England, July 2018
9,000 secondary school arts teachers have left their jobs in England since 2011
Collapse in GCSE arts subjects in England gathers pace, May 2018
The fall in entry numbers in England for GCSE arts subjects has reached record levels
Music instruction ‘at risk of extinction’, May 2018
Teaching union warns of impact of ‘catastrophic cuts’ in Scotland
Growing research on the negative effects of the EBacc:
* University of Sussex research, 700 secondary schools, March 2017
* Cultural Learning Alliance Ebacc evidence and briefings

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