Positive MusicEd Forum
There are many challenges in UK Music Education at the moment. Funding for all schools is insufficient and many cuts are having to be made, creating a bleak future for our young people. Some schools, including those in York, are suffering due to the government's funding formula meaning we receive only £4800 per student (starting in the next couple of years), compared to the £8k+ already received in other areas of the country. Classes are becoming overcrowded, staff redundancies and significant issues with long-term illness caused by the pressures created by increased accountability measures. Proposed changes in the national music curriculum are also creating a significant amount of anxiety for teachers as the government appears to be pro-active in creating an new solution, but it has recently been announced that a non-school based organisation has been given the job of developing it. Naturally these situations (and other complications) have generated a huge amount of negative comment online, with many teachers using social media to share of their worries. It is completely justified to share in this way and right that people are able to speak-out. However as we continue to strive to create the highest quality music education on a very tight budget, we must share positive ideas and rebuild together. We should share of the things we've been doing that are working well and encourage other teachers and their students at every opportunity.
I've therefore created the @Positive_forum Twitter account, as a place to share positive ideas. After just one week online, the twitter feed has had 47,000+ views. People are telling us they have felt encouraged by the site and are beginning to feel greatly encouraged themselves by sharing. The account is already followed by some of the most gifted music educators and researchers in the country.