Call to action: Keep RCT Music Service
This petition had 3,070 supporters
A third round of drastic cuts to services across Rhondda Cynon Taff has been revealed to include the disbandment of the once-championed Music Service.
Councillor Andrew Morgan, leader of Rhondda Cynon Taff Council (South Wales, UK) said, "Funding cuts by the UK Government means local government in Wales will face a budget reduction of -4% next year [ ... ] For Rhondda Cynon Taff that means an estimated budget gap of more than £30m next year." We naturally understand that ‘times-are-hard’, but we are tired of music services receiving the full brunt of continuing cuts and reshuffles as we are often treated as a ‘luxury’ service by the ignorant.
Over 3500 children benefit from the Rhondda Cynon Taff Music Service, which works across schools in some of Wales’ most deprived areas, delivering specialised music provision across the heart of the South Wales Valleys. Our staff are consummate professionals in their fields offering provision in Strings, Piano, Harp, Guitar, Vocals, Brass, Woodwind and Percussion across both nursery, primary and secondary sectors. Our established professional relationships with the schools in which we work are championed, making our music making the most exciting and creative experience for our children. We also provide ‘extra-curricular’ services to the highest of standards: Arts outreach projects and Community engagement projects; in excess of 20 music ensembles including the Youth Orchestra and Choir (often performing under internationally-renowned conductors and performing music by Welsh composers past and present) to the ever-popular, Samba Band; Curriculum Music in schools and music theory provision.
Although the trajectory in music provision over the last 15 years is generally positive in the UK, there are huge areas of concern: many children and young people have not had access to instrumental lessons (over 50% in Wales), while others have no engagement with formal music tuition after primary school (For more detailed information, see the ABRSM Making Music Report September 2014). These distressing figures need to be addressed. We must not allow Rhondda Cynon Taff Music Service to succumb to the current graveyard of the Arts. Rhondda Cynon Taff Music Service is NOT at all a luxury service. Children NEED music. It forms life-long friendships. It engages parts of the brain and stimulates learning processes that other sectors of education envy. It provides professional platforms on Wales’ finest stages for performance. It provides relief from social and otherwise economic problems in some of Wales’ most deprived areas. If we are the ‘Land of Song’ and are internationally heralded on our music making, then why are we continuing to disband our music services?
How can you help?
- Please sign this petition in support of this cause.
- If this matter concerns you as much as it does us, please contact your local County Councillor to sound out your concerns. To find those who are currently representing your area, please follow this link: http://www.rctlabour.co.uk/about-us/your-councillor. However, disregarding political preference, please feel free to contact ANY of your local councillors (both elected and un-elected) as we need this word to spread.
- Use social media platforms wisely! We have these public spaces at our fingertips to spread the word in seconds. Repost and share this petition and any other articles that may appear on this cause.
- Calling all friends of RCT Music Service and alumni: Our greatest tactic is to educate the ill-informed in understanding how this music service is of vital importance to our education and future. Spread the news amongst your colleagues and old friends of the Music Service. Likewise, use social media platforms to spread the word by posting old snapshots of you with your old violin or photos of you and your time in the orchestra or choir, for instance.
Today: Nathan James is counting on you
Nathan James Dearden needs your help with “Cllr Andrew Morgan, Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council: Call to action: Keep RCT Music Service”. Join Nathan James and 3,069 supporters today.