On 5th December we wrote, in partnership with the ISM and MU, to the Secretary of State for Education on behalf of the employers and employees of music education delivery organisations across England, which are currently facing a significant funding shortfall that will severely limit their ability to deliver the Government’s 2022 National Plan for Music Education.
We recognise that what seems like a small part of the challenge facing music education hub partnerships currently has the potential to have a significant impact and that could create ripples of concern both within organistions and for teaching staff. We therefore hope that a joint message from Music Mark and the two key organisations supporting the teaching workforce, ISM and MU, will demonstrate a united message to government of our concern. We continue however to highlight in our conversations with government officials the wider financial challenges as well as other operational issues such as the recruitment and retention of staff to deliver, but hope that further highlighting this particular issue may result in some recognition by government of the need to support those impacted by their need to increase employers contributions to this government pension scheme.
“Our concerns about TPS Employer Contributions are part of the wider financial challenges faced by Music Education Hubs. Funding for Hubs has risen by just 1% since 2012. During this time, the Bank of England inflation calculator shows inflation running at 37%. The comparison with 2007 funding levels is worse: there has been a 9% fall in funding against an inflation increase of 61%. This ongoing stagnation of investment is particularly evident at a time when Hubs are being asked to deliver the exciting and expanded ambitions of the new National Plan for Music Education.
In summary, the ISM, MU and Music Mark would ask you, as Secretary of State, the following:
– To support all employers with staff in the Teachers Pension Scheme to cover the increase in Employer Contributions. This is essential to ensure that Hub Lead Organisations can continue to operate.
– To commit to an inflationary-linked uplift to the funding for Music Education Hubs, so that they will be able to meet their obligations and your aspirations, ensuring true equity of provision.”