Music Network, the national music development organisation with whom I work on the Music Capital Scheme, have long been advocates of increased support and recognition of the huge value of music in education. Today sees the fruition of a 2003 study analysing the benefits of music in education as rock legends U2 come on board with €5million to finance the Music Education Scheme.
With the support of The Arts Council and the Department of Education, two pilot schemes ran in Donegal and Dublin and gaps within music education provision were highlighted as a result. Significant gaps were found in access to instrumental and vocal tuition, which, according to the report, has remained the preserve of the wealthier classes (I know my mother reading this will retort “You and your siblings all received instrumental tuition, despite not belonging to those so called “wealthier classes”.” and I can only say that my parents are both incredibly far-sighted individuals who recognised the fact that the early sacrfices would have huge benefits in years to come). The scheme intends to work in tandem with local partners and applications for the scheme will be made on a competitive tender basis. U2 and The Ireland Funds will provide financial support for the scheme and applicants will be expected to demonstrate an ability to provide matching resources locally and detail plans for the sustainability of the scheme in their area.
For more information on the initiative contact Music Network on 01-671 9429