James Rhodes Responds to Nicky Morgan’s Conference Speech

Yesterday, Nicky Morgan gave her first major speech as Secretary of State for Education at the Conservative Party Conference.

Before she made her speech, Don’t Stop The Music Campaign champion James Rhodes outlined what he hoped to hear from the Minister in a column for the TES.

The classical pianist said: “It’s essential that we ensure there is sufficient funding for music in schools, and that teachers are adequately trained in music education and feel confident to teach it effectively. But it’s also key that subjects beyond maths and English are seen to be important and valued parts of the curriculum.”

In her speech, Ms Morgan declared: “Our plan for education is working”. Touching on music in education, she said:

“…as much as I want the next generation to be able to solve a quadratic equation, I also want them to be able to make a compelling pitch for a job, and to be able to bounce back if things don’t work out.

“That’s why we’ve invested in areas like music, sport and debating that help to shape and teach important values like hard work, discipline, teamwork.”

Responding to her speech, James Rhodes commented:

“The Secretary of State says that the Government’s plan for education is working.But when it comes to music in schools, thousands of children still don’t have access to a good music education or the chance to learn an instrument – a commitment the Government made three years ago in another plan, the National Plan for Music Education.

“Nicky Morgan’s speech acknowledged the contribution of music in teaching children values such as discipline and teamwork. Parents and teachers would add to that list benefits like confidence, concentration and positive knock-on effects for other key subjects – such as literacy and numeracy. Let’s tackle the problems in music education that see so many children still missing out on a life-changing opportunity.”

What did you think of Nicky Morgan’s speech? Join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #DontStopTheMusic.

Sign James Rhodes’ petition, calling on Nicky Morgan to ensure every primary school child in England has the opportunity to learn a musical instrument.


James Rhodes Responds to Nicky Morgan’s Conference Speech
Don't Stop The Music champion James Rhodes
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