Researchers have warned that music could face extinction

According to the researchers, music is being squeezed out because of pressure on students to take subjects included in the EBacc school league table measure.
By Jeremy Morrow | Mar 10, 2017
According to the researchers, music is being squeezed out because of pressure on students to take subjects included in the EBacc school league table measure.

In the survey, almost two-thirds of the 650 school teachers interviewed said that EBacc meant fewer students were taking GCSE music.

The English Baccalaureate or EBacc was introduced by the coalition government in 2010 for pupils who achieve GCSE grade C or better in English, maths, the sciences, a language, and geography or history.

Government figures show that the proportion of GCSE candidates in state-funded learning institutions who took the EBacc subjects rose from 22% in 2010 to approximately 40% last year.

Critics have faulted the system, arguing that this increase has come at the expense of the arts. Only 47% of pupils were entered for at least one art subject in 2016, down from 49.6% the previous year.

In the five years to 2016-17, the schools in the survey entered for music qualifications.

Regarding staffing, 39% of the teachers interviewed revealed that there had been cuts to music staff numbers. Only 17% reported increases.

"Music as a subject could face extinction," warned study co-author Dr. Ally Daubney.

The other co-author, senior lecturer Duncan Mackrill, said the future of the subject is precariously balanced.

McKrill urged the British government to take action in a bid to stem the further erosion of music in secondary schools before the subject is lost for good in some institutions.

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