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Thursday, November 08, 2018

Music education 'thrown to the wolves' in the UK | Entertainment & Arts - BBC News

A study suggests children from poorer families are being priced out of learning musical instruments, as BBC News reports. 

Trumpeter John Thirkell: "I could not have started this journey without free music lessons in school."
Photo: David Harrison
Musician John Thirkell has called on the government to support music lessons for children.
"Music education has been thrown to the wolves in the UK," said the trumpet player, who has worked with George Michael, Tina Turner and Bruno Mars.

His comments coincide with research published by the Musicians' Union (MU) suggesting poorer children are priced out of learning musical instruments.

Children in low income households were half as likely to take music lessons.

The report suggests only 19% of children from families earning less than £28,000 learned a musical instrument, compared with 40% of those in high-earning households.

This is despite similar levels of interest from both groups of children.

The report also suggests higher-earning parents were twice as likely to want their children to learn an instrument...

The department also pointed out that music education is compulsory up to the age of 14 in the national curriculum.

Thirkell said: "I could not have started this journey without free music lessons in school. My parents worked hard to put food on our table, so there is no way that my parents could have afforded to help with my tuition.

"When you teach a child to play an instrument, you are teaching them a whole range of critical life skills which you learn along the way. It requires dedication, organisation and persistence; it is mathematical; you learn how to fit into a group. There is so much more than meets the eye."

Source: BBC News