Fading Notes: Music Education for the Next Generation of Primary Teachers has been publicly released this week with front page coverage on The Age today and online across the 9 mastheads.
We congratulate the Alberts | The Tony Foundation for leading this important research, and the National Music Teacher Mentoring Program are proud to be associated with the Music Education: Right from the Start initiative.
According to the Fading Notes report, a research collaboration with music learning expert Dr. Anita Collins, and Dr. Rachael Hocking, the time and value dedicated to music learning within primary teaching degrees is at an all-time low.
The report reveals that average music education training hours have fallen from 17 in 2009 to 8 by the end of 2022.
Music education also attracts just 1% of the overall credit point value, and only one in five students observe a music class before having to give one themselves.
This lack of depth adversely influences perceptions, with 71% of respondents saying their students don’t expect to teach music in the classroom despite curriculum requirements.
The time dedicated to music learning varies widely across the country and, in some cases, reflects state curriculums. Tasmania and Western Australian universities allocate 12 hours of tuition, nearly double that of universities in Victoria (6.06) and the ACT (6.5).
Further, just 3.82% of the 4,670 new teachers from surveyed universities entering primary schools each year have any specialisation in music learning. This highlights the lack of tertiary development pathways for emerging teachers seeking to specialise in music. Two-thirds of identified universities don’t offer a music specialisation, and half of surveyed lecturers agree their students need further development to teach music effectively.
Now more than ever, there is a significant inequity of access to music education in Australia. Australian universities have cut music education training for primary teachers in half over the past 13 years, leaving a generation of children who increasingly miss out on experiencing the joy of a creative, musical classroom environment.
Every child should have the opportunity to learn and create musicThe late Richard Gill AO, Founder of the National Music Teacher Mentoring Program
The National Music Teacher Mentoring Program was established by Richard Gill AO, who was driven to address the decreasing focus on music education training for new teachers.
This now represents a crisis for the future of music education, and for music as an accessible and relevant artform for all Australians.
The NMTMP presents a simple solution to this problem, pairing expert mentors with teachers across the country, building confidence and competence.