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Ofsted report is music to teachers' ears

02/03/2012 Joanna
More music needs to be made in lessons on the subject across England, a new report published by Ofsted today (March 2nd) says.

Following a three-year survey of music lessons in English schools, the education watchdog found that the quantity and quality of actual music being played needs to improve.

The report recommended that in order to improve the standard of their lessons, music teachers should place greater emphasis on playing instruments and singing, while also incorporating music technology such as production software into their lessons.

Of those schools that were assessed for the 'Music in Schools: Wider still, and wider - quality and inequality in music education 2008-11' report, one in five visited by inspectors were found to be inadequate in their music provisions, with almost half judged inadequate when it came to singing.

Launching the report, Her Majesty's chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw said that all too often inspectors did not witness enough music being played.

"Too much use was made of non-musical activities such as writing without any reference to musical sound," he said.

"Too much time was spent talking about tasks without teachers actually demonstrating what was required musically, or allowing the pupils to get on with their music making."

Across secondary schools, the report found that an average of 14 per cent of pupils were involved part in extra-curricular music activities, with girls twice as likely to take part as boys.

It also highlighted that just six per cent of pupils with disabilities or special educational needs were involved and encouraged schools to develop and monitor children's musical development.

Last year, the government announced the first National Plan for Music Education - which committed over £200 million of investment in music - which will see regional music hubs developed.

"I hope that schools and the new music hubs will use our recommendations to improve the quality of their music education," Sir Michael added.

Posted by Charlotte MichaelsADNFCR-2164-ID-801308665-ADNFCR
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