Secondary Schools: Arts Subjects Debate

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Department: Department for Education

Secondary Schools: Arts Subjects

Lord Lexden Excerpts
Monday 7th June 2021

(4 months, 2 weeks ago)

Lords Chamber

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Department for Education
Baroness Berridge Portrait Baroness Berridge (Con)
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My Lords, all I can say to the noble Baroness is that, unfortunately, we have had to make some difficult decisions in relation to current priorities. An arts premium will be considered in the spending review but, as I have outlined, about £84 million this year has gone into the music hub and various programmes to ensure that provision. I wish we had the ideal world that the noble Baroness outlines.

Lord Lexden Portrait Lord Lexden (Con)
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My Lords, I declare my interest as president of the Independent Schools Association, which is made up of over 550 smaller independent schools serving their local communities up and down the country. Following on from my noble friend Lord Lingfield’s question, have the Government noted that, before the pandemic, state and independent schools were working together in over 1,200 partnership schemes involving either music or drama? With so many pupils having missed out over the last year, is this not the moment for the Government to encourage more state schools to work with their local independent colleagues so that the education system as a whole achieves the maximum benefit of collaboration between the two sectors?

Baroness Berridge Portrait Baroness Berridge (Con)
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My Lords, my noble friend is correct: there are many successful partnerships and I have the pleasure of regularly meeting the Independent Schools Council and other sector bodies, as he outlines. In the next couple of weeks I am holding a round table for precisely that purpose: to see how the existing partnerships could be strengthened and whether we could see an expansion of that activity.