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In Harmony Lambeth strengthens ties with Southbank Centre

2 July 2013

The Southbank Centre has become a major partner with In Harmony Lambeth. Staff from Lambeth Council have joined Southbank Centre host elements of the initiative on site. The London branch of Sistema England, launched in 2009, is one of six national programmes and is jointly funded by Department for Education, Arts Council England and Southbank Centre. 

Inspired by El Sistema, In Harmony aims to ‘achieve musical excellence in an immersive environment to benefit the lives of children and the local community. This commitment to In Harmony Lambeth further strengthens Southbank Centre’s relationship with El Sistema.’ 

Southbank Centre will continue to host ensembles from Venezuela, including the Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra, Simón Bolívar National Youth Choir of Venezuela and the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra, as well as In Harmony groups across the country and projects from around the world. 

The partnership will be enhanced in future years through Southbank Centre’s transformation of the Festival Wing. The new Glass Pavilion at the heart of the new Festival Wing will be built, partly to meet Southbank Centre’s future ambitions for the In Harmony programme The Glass Pavilion will provide much-needed additional space for future nucleo workshops, more access for children and young people to open rehearsals by professional orchestras and work with some of the best musicians from around the world, as well as more opportunities for thousands of young people to experience and perform classical music at Southbank Centre.

On the weekend of 28–30 June, the Southbank Centre turned into a 'nucleo', a Venezuelan-inspired music centre, with music-making opportunities for children, young people and adults from around the country. 

Trinity Laban offers free CPD training

21 June 2013

Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance is offering free places on a pilot programme for music educators that takes place this July. Two pathway strands are available: Creative Education Practice (CEP), and Instrumental and Vocal Teaching (IVT).

The pilot will help to inform the final preparations for validation for two new qualifications, the Postgraduate Certificate and Postgraduate Diploma in Music Teaching and Learning. The Certificate/Diploma is a flexible, vocational training opportunity for established music educators who have previous experience in the sector. 

The programme offers two pathway strands; Creative Education Practice (CEP) on Saturday 20 July and Instrumental and Vocal Teaching (IVT) on Sunday 21 July. Both days will run from 10am–6.30pm, and lunch will be provided.

You may be a private instrumental or vocal teacher, a music technology tutor, a music leader specialising in special needs or disabilities or a practitioner working with early years or with older people. Whatever your specialism, Trinity Laban is keen to hear from you. 

To secure a place, email L&

ISM calls for continued government commitment to funding music education

11 June 2013

The Incorporated Society of Musicians (ISM) is calling for the government to protect music education hubs and commit itself to continuing dedicated funding to sustain the National Plan for Music Education in England in 2015/16. All public funding is being reviewed as part of the Comprehensive Spending Review and there is concern over the continuation of music education hub funding beyond 2015.

Supported by cellist Julian Lloyd-Webber and violinist Tasmin Little, the ISM has issued a statement pointing out that the national music plan promised £75m/£63m/£58m for the three financial years 2012-15, to support a network of 123 music education hubs across England. These hubs, says the ISM, deliver music education in many different forms to millions of children, ensuring high standards and accessibility. Currently there is no government commitment to funding the hubs beyond 2015. The ISM is calling on the government to make this commitment now so that the hubs can plan for the future and continue their work.

'Funding for music education hubs has already been reduced by 23% over three years,' said Deborah Annetts, chief executive of ISM, 'so any further cuts would seriously put at risk the government's commitment to a high-quality music education and undermine an already stretched music education offer in our schools.

'Music is vital to a high-quality and rigorous education. In these times of austerity, music education becomes even more critical, creating fully-rounded members of society and contributing significantly to the wealth of our nation. It is essential therefore that the government continues to back our world-class music educators and commit to ongoing funding which will make the promises of the national music plan a reality.'

Music educators, parents and students are asked to sign up and support the campaign. Further details can be found on the campaign page.

Education secretary announces consultation on proposed GCSE reforms

11 June 2013

The Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, has announced a consultation on proposed subject content and assessment objectives for reformed GCSEs to be introduced for first teaching in September 2015 in England. Covering ancient languages, English language and literature, geography, history, mathematics, modern languages and sciences, it will run from 11 June to 20 August and asks general and subject-specific questions about whether the proposed content for GCSEs represents a demanding and fulfilling course of study for students who will take the qualifications. Music is not currently included in the consultation.
A parallel consultation on new regulatory requirements for the reformed GCSEs, such as assessment arangements, is being carried out by Ofqual. The main characteristics of the proposed reforms would be a return to more linear two-year courses ending in exams, with a much-reduced emphasis on modules, coursework and controlled assessment; and the introduction of a numeric marking system with a wider range of grades, that can differentiate more effectively between different levels of achievement.
Details of the proposals and consultation documents can be found on the Department for Education's website:

Education fellowships available for international research

7 June 2013

The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust (WCMT) and the Finzi trust have teamed together to offer a small number of fellowships for music educators who are seeking to research education systems in other countries. 

The Joint scholarship allows for travel to other countries in order to 'observe and disseminate new knowledge and examples of best practice'

Anyone interested should visit the WCMT website and apply in the normal way, selecting Education-Music on the application form. 

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