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NEW SURVEY WILL BOOST SCHOOL MUSIC - GOVERNMENT

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A survey of school music which will help inform future funding and ...
A survey of school music which will help inform future funding and

lay the foundations for expansion has been announced by schools minister Charles Clarke.

Speaking at the National Festival of Music for Youth Conference, Mr

Clarke said: 'There has been a great deal of variation in school

music services in the past. To prevent further cuts in funding and to

provide the boost music in schools needs, David Blunkett and Chris

Smith announced the creation of the Music Standards Fund. This fund

will pay£150m over three years towards protecting and expanding music services.

'But we want to be absolutely sure that the money is being

distributed in a way that will help music services to reach as many

children as possible. So we will be asking LEAs to tell us exactly

how much they spend, and how the money is being used. We will also

make more transparent the whole process of bidding for grants from

the Music Standards Fund.

'We will also, working with the National Foundation for Youth Music,

be asking local education authorities, headteachers, teachers and

other groups, like Music for Youth, how they think the Fund should

work. This government is committed to working in partnership with

interested bodies to give all our children fair access to music

education.'

NOTES

1. The Music Standards Fund is part of the£180m boost for

music which David Blunkett and Chris Smith announced in January this

year. Two separate grants are available to Local Education

Authorities from the fund: Grant 27a 'Protecting LEA Music Services'

and Grant 27b 'Expanding LEA Music Services'. The first round of

grants, for 1999-2000, was announced on 1 March. LEAs benefited from

a total of£41m to support their music services. In the coming

months the operation of the grants for this year will be reviewed

with a view to considering improvements for future years.

2. The survey of LEA music services will take place over the next two

months. Information from the survey will help inform the basis of

allocation for funding 2000-1 and 2001-2

3. The National Foundation for Youth Music, launched by the prime

minister on 23 June, will act as a national advocate for the cause

of, and advisor to the government on, music education. The foundation

starts its public consultation on policies and priorities today.

Copies of the consultation document can be obtained by writing to PO

Box 214, 35 Winkley Square, Preston PR1 3GJ. Telephone No 08450 560

560 (calls charged at local rate); Fax 01722 836 199; or email to

nfym@ltfs.co.uk

4. Music for Youth is a registered charity which was founded in 1971.

It is dedicated to developing and encouraging music in schools and

fostering the activities of young musicians. It was formed to

organise and manage the National Festival of Music for Youth and the

Schools Proms Series of concerts. The DfEE has supported Music for

Youth through an annual grant since 1987.

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