School children to get 5 hours culture a week

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by tubafran, Feb 13, 2008.

  1. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    Did anyone hear the interview on Radio 4 Today programme this morning with the Culture Secretary Andy Burnham? John Humphries ran him ragged when he tried to get an explanation as to what it was the government wanted schools to do and exactly how they were going to fit it into the school week.

    "Every school child is to receive five hours of "high quality culture" per week according to new government plans. We talk to Culture Secretary Andy Burnham.

    Listen to the interview

    Announcement of 10 pilot schemes costing £25 million"

    John Humphries passed on the calculation that the "additional" money equated to £15 per pupil and then the Secretary was going on about taking children to opera etc - He should have listened to that Barnsley MP, for the same money they could see loads more brass band concerts than opera.

    There's also a report on the BBC News site.

    Looking forward to seeing some of that £25million coming along to a few bands.
  2. imthemaddude

    imthemaddude Active Member

    It's alright giving schools money and initiatives but who is going to do all the risk assessments and pay for the coaches and get the correct ratio of staff without having to use supply to cover and how are we going to get the results if we cant spend more time on core subjects and is there enough 'culture' out there that is suitable each week?'s yet another 'do this' without thought for the people having to plan and organise it all. I'd love to do more of this sort of stuff with the kids. Last year I took them on an evening to see Tracy Beaker at the theatre because they wanted to go but the rest of the staff were like why did you do that.

    Doubt we will see some of the money come our way in banding to put stuff on for the kids.
  3. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    Forgive me if I'm asking a blindingly obvious question, but what exactly constitutes "high quality culture"?
  4. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    (avoiding cultural reference about religious figures and mountains...)

    If its too complicated or expensive to take the little darlings to the event, what about bringing the event to the kids: playing concerts in the schools?

    Maybe the governors and friends will get involved and help with the organisation?

    Don't know if you'll get the kids attending, but even if some do, it would be worth it....

    We played at a school last Saturday in Towcester and the chair of governors asked "when can you come back again?". We accompanied several of the pupils for their GCSE/A-level performance recordings, and played two "massed band" pieces with the school brass and concert bands. (OK, our MD is head of music at the school, but it did feel a good evening)

    Milk from Harrods with mould growing on the top? :p
  5. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    This from Mr Balls

    "All children and young people should have the chance to experience top quality culture - whether that is seeing a play or dance performance, learning a musical instrument or producing some creative writing..."

    So now you know - twice a week you are experiencing "high culture" when you go to a band rehearsal.

    Not sure if it's come across in my posts but I am completly sceptical of these so called initatives to promote this or that with out any consideration for the obvious problems with there implimentation. It really is just a bit of spin - didn't the government have one last year were every school kid was going to learn and instrument or have weekly singing lessons. When did it become the norm for these things to only be instigated with the latest must have initiative?

    Gets out rosy tinted specs - I remember at school having recorder lessons, singing every day, trips to cultural events - theatre, films, historical sites, museums, school plays, shows, musicals etc - so what went wrong when did schools stop doing all this?
  6. imthemaddude

    imthemaddude Active Member

    When the NC, league tables and risk assessments and no more free music lessons came in.
  7. Aidan

    Aidan Active Member

    high quality culture = bongos + rnb?
  8. hicks

    hicks Member

    Forget the headline grabbing, head-in-the-clouds, bonkers initiatives. Start by providing some good quality music lessons for the kids, with proper equipment and qualified teachers. From what I've seen, this is sadly lacking in my local schools.
  9. smiler_38

    smiler_38 Member

    5 hours ....

    having deja vu here....
    I remember back in 1973 when schools used to have their own brass bands, and orchestras, and choirs, and music (and sports) was a big part of the 'learning culture'. I also remember the thursday "1 hour" brass lesson with the perri where you got excused one 'normal' lesson to go to this brass session...... and I managed to get excused the full days worth to do every 1 hr session that was available! :cool:

    So , I am also very sceptical about the government's 'good' intention's to bring in this 5 hours cultural stuff. It's probably just to justify putting our taxes up even more.. ( but thats for another thread).
  10. imthemaddude

    imthemaddude Active Member

    Indeed, I teach English and Geography but have been given one lesson of music to teach each week in my classroom with no instruments.
  11. Pav

    Pav Member

    Is that followed by one hour of football without the ball?
  12. sooze booze

    sooze booze Member

    Just more government spin and Bull. Its probably not even new money, but recycled previously pledged funds from months ago.

    There desperate (the goverment) not to admit that the Olympics is about to have a devastating effect on Arts funding.

    Jon Evison


    I agree. Another pie in the sky idea. Giving children 5 hours (or the equivalent of 1 full day per week in our school...) of 'culture' is all very well but we'll still be expected to get to get the kids through exams, SATS, assessments, reading and maths initiatives, cross curricular projects. Where are they expecting us to get the extra time from. Not to mention the money needed to pay for this 'culture' injection (£25m is not enough to go round everyone, no matter what anyone says...)

    Sorry, rant over. :)
  14. postie

    postie Member

    Schools stopped doing this because of health and safety?
    Schools having to do risk assessments ??? Insurances costs?

    Lack of time and lack of sufficient funding in the past / provision for such activites.
  15. RobBari

    RobBari Member

    I love it, Smiler38, did the very same thing. every lesson on a thursday was my brass lesson teachers never caught on. several others managed to do the same thing. we had the best rehearsed school band in wales.
    ps 1973 was a great year, maybe another thread??
  16. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    I'm sorry all. I am apologising for having one of my shouting at the radio mornings today. Andy Burnham was/is my MP and I've never had a high opinion of him. I'm afraid culture in Wigan is founds either in yoghurt pots or between the webs of the toes of the inhabitants during their once yearly bath - bathing is unhealthy, you know!

    It would be better if they would reintroduce free instrumental tuition than all this airy-fairy, pie-in-the-sky nonsense. Honestly. What shiite!:rolleyes:
  17. andyp

    andyp Active Member


    Typical soundbite politics. Dress up a small amount of money that was already allocated as a "new" initiative, couple of photos of some kids hitting some bongos, cos it'll have to be foreign culture, it being politically incorrect to fund anything British these days, make it look like you're doing something.

    Let's face it, most people's idea of "culture" comes from the TV. Lord knows how many million people watch EastEnders, Corrie, etc. Their music is MTV, either some bloke shouting into a mike about "ho's" or Simon Cowell's latest version of some 60's hit with beeps sung by whoever looks the thinnest.

    Why is it always the school's job to do this stuff. Why don't parents do aything with their kids any more? Is it because taking little Johnny to football (or band, or whatever) interferes with their watching TV and drinking Stella?

    Typical Labour, encourage dependance on the state (and control by the state) in every way. Those dependant on the state are more likely to vote Labour. 2 million kids live in households dependent on benefit. Coincidence?

    Until parents are forced (if necessary) to take responsibility for their kids, this country is doomed. It's a shame for those that do, as they watch others being given for free what they work for.

  18. Lauradoll

    Lauradoll Active Member

    There are loads of things you can teach without instruments!!

    Vocal tradition, street music, junk band, blues, jazz- the list is endless! Or get a trolley with percussion instruments on it you can wheel around the school -they'll find you some lovely keyboards and headphones then!!
  19. Bunnymonster

    Bunnymonster Member

    Come on everybody! Wake -up!

    Culture doesn't just mean music. 5 hours a week is easily covered:
    1 hr - music
    1 hr - drama
    1 hr - art
    1 hr - dance
    1 hr - english

    and thats before we even start looking at textiles/ pottery/ carpentry.

    If I take my students out to a concert (of which I have already done five this academic year) that easily counts towards the 5 hrs. Why look a gift horse in the mouth - this is just what I need to explain to senior management why I'm taking the kids out of science... again! :clap:
  20. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    Maybe, but at £15 per child = £3 per lesson! And SLT will just look at the curriculum and say, "we're already doing that!"

    You try taking a class of kids to the theatre for £3 a head then let me know how you did it!

    Been there, bought the Tee-shirt, wrote the book.

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