Teachers take a lead to save music tuition

Tracey Rapson and her daughter Amelie (11) of Bonnyrigg. Tracey has set up a petition against music tuition cuts proposed by Midlothian Council. Amelie currently receives free clarinet tuition.
Tracey Rapson and her daughter Amelie (11) of Bonnyrigg. Tracey has set up a petition against music tuition cuts proposed by Midlothian Council. Amelie currently receives free clarinet tuition.

Local members of the country’s largest teaching union are leading a call for instrumental music to be protected in all schools across Scotland.

This week, at the EIS annual general meeting in Dundee, the Midlothian EIS Local Association is proposing a motion highlighting concerns about an emerging ‘postcode lottery’ and questioning why some local authorities can provide free music tuition and others charge hundreds of pounds.

EIS general secretary Larry Flanagan said: “Our position is that the cuts that have been imposed on these services during a period of austerity budgeting and the increase in charges levied to families for music tuition have contributed to a significant erosion of music in schools and place them at risk of extinction.

“EIS members who teach instrumental music are now reporting catastrophic cuts and outrageous charges. We are hearing of charges of up to £524 per pupil being mooted.”

The EIS has lodged a petition at the Scottish Parliament (www.eis.org.uk/Change-The-Tune/InstrumentalMusicPetition), calling for free instrumental tuition to be available to all children attending state schools.