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A National Music Service for England: Responses to the Proposal

One week on from The Fabian Society’s proposal for a new National Music Service, we look at press feedback and what key publications have to say.

Published: 11 August 2022 | 5:26 PM
Female teacher is sitting with one of her students in a music lesson at school. He is learning to play the keyboard and is wearing headphones.
“Being able to play music or sing has a beneficial impact on physical and mental health for young people". Image credit: Shutterstock.

Last week we reported how The Fabian Society had released a proposal for a National Music Service.

The report, published by the Fabian Society with contributions from the MU, sets out how:

Music education matters. It supports educational outcomes, improves health and wellbeing, and creates opportunities in growing sectors of the economy.

But many young people in England are being denied access to good music education: in schools, there is reduced access to statutory provision and it is now often taught in rotation with other arts subjects.

Our new report makes the case for government to introduce a National Music Education Service. It also puts forward a number of recommendations for government to restore high-quality music education as a core learning entitlement which every child can access.

Press coverage

The report has since been covered in an article by The Stage, a vital source for news and services for the UK theatre, entertainment and performing arts industry.

The Labour List has also reiterated the importance of the proposal and recommends that the next Labour government should introduce a National Music Education Service in England.

The article, co-written by both Ben Cooper (Senior Researcher at the Fabian Society) and the MU’s General Secretary Naomi Pohl states that:

“Being able to play music or sing has a beneficial impact on physical and mental health for young people and, by generating a love of music, music education can act as a foundation for these benefits to be accessed well into adulthood”.

MU National Organiser for Education and Health & Wellbeing, Chris Walters, also spoke to Music Teacher Magazine, where he said on the report’s publication:

‘The MU is delighted to have worked with the Fabian Society to offer a different vision for music education, building on what is working well, but without shying away from the inequalities and flaws that remain part of England’s music education system.

‘Unlike the worthwhile but non-statutory guidance provided by the government’s recent National Plan for Music Education, this report seeks to lay out what a statutory framework could look like.’

Social media responses

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