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STUC 2010




Children must have a right to music in schools.

John Stevenson
John Stevenson

Every school age child should have the chance to learn a musical instrument, said the STUC, as it called on the Scottish Government and local authorities to roll back cuts in the service and hikes in charges.

Seconding a Musicians' Union motion, UNISON's John Stevenson said that the chance to learn a musical instrument is crucial to encouraging creativity.

"Many of us here will have had the chance to try out musical instruments at school - not because we already had an aptitude - but so we could find out if we did", said John.

"No risk. We could do it free and many a musician will have been discovered that way.

"But what if that service wasn't there? Or it was rationed due to cuts, like the 50% cut in Fife? Or you had to face a hike in charges like in South Lanarkshire or a 14% rise like in Angus or almost doubled like in Highland?

"A whole generation of young people would miss the opportunity to discover making music.

John pointed out that children who play an instrument do better educationally and socially.

"School is not just about training people to become wage slaves. It should be about learning experiences, about learning to think, about discovering talents. It should be about being allowed to experiment."

And John concluded, "The years of enjoyment I've got from the chance to learn an instrument is probably only matched by the years of pain of those around me, right enough - but it is an opportunity every child should have."



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