Every Child a Musician inspires national campaign launch for every primary school child to be taught a musical instrument

Past winners of the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition have been inspired by a recent visit to see Newham's Every Child a Musician Programme in local primary schools.

A group of top musicians have launched a campaign to ensure all primary school children are given the chance to learn to play an instrument without it costing their families.

The musicians, all past winners of the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition, say being able to read and make music should be a "universal right", and are calling on the government to protect the future of music.

The group highlight the Every Child a Musician project in the London Borough of Newham, which gifts all primary school children in the area a free instrument and teaches them how to read and play music in weekly lessons, as an example that could be expanded.

Former acting Labour leader Harriet Harman, who is backing the campaign in Parliament, said austerity should not be prioritised over equality.

She told the paper: "The problem is that it's just a postcode and class lottery, and it shouldn't be like that.

"We can't say that, because of austerity, we will just accept inequality."

The Department for Education told the paper the government was investing nearly £500 million in music and arts education programmes between 2016 and 2020, including £300 million for a network of music education hubs, whose responsibilities include ensuring that every child aged between 5 and 18 has the opportunity to learn to play a musical instrument.

As Every Child a Musician grows from strength to strength, it is humbling to receive such recognition of our efforts at a national level. We look forward to supporting this campaign in any way we can in the future.

For further information about the Times Educational Supplement backed-campaign and the full article please click the link below: 

Top musicians warn of 'decay' of instrument learning (Times Educational Supplement, May 2018)

 

The Every Child a Musician programme in the London Borough of Newham, is cited as a model that could be expanded nationally.

"The problem is that it's just a postcode and class lottery, and it shouldn't be like that...we can't say that, because of austerity, we will just accept inequality."

Harriet Harman, Former acting Labour leader