Schools: Music, Art, Craft and Dance Debate

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Department: Department for Education

Schools: Music, Art, Craft and Dance

Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Excerpts
Monday 16th October 2023

(6 months ago)

Lords Chamber
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Baroness Barran Portrait Baroness Barran (Con)
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I meet many teachers who deliver these subjects, and I am struck by their commitment and skill. Close to 100% of teachers in art and design and in music have a relevant qualification post A-level.

Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Baroness Evans of Bowes Park (Con)
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I refer noble Lords to my entry in the register of interests. Earlier this year, I attended a performance of scenes from Shakespeare plays by year 5s from North Wootton Academy at St George’s Guildhall, the oldest working theatre in the UK. When I spoke to pupils afterwards, it was clear not only how much they absolutely loved the experience but just how much confidence they had gained from performing on stage and in front of an audience. Can my noble friend explain or outline what the department is doing in addition to the fantastic school-led initiatives, of which that is one, to try to ensure that children of all ages are able to perform in public?

Baroness Barran Portrait Baroness Barran (Con)
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My noble friend paints a wonderful picture; I think that the House can imagine the pleasure of those children involved. I was fortunate enough to go and see something similar with a number of school orchestras and choirs performing, and I absolutely agree with what she said. We continue to support such activities, and will do more in our cultural education plan. I remind the House that we have also included an hour of music a week as compulsory, as our expectation in the school curriculum.