As Music Mark CEO Bridget Whyte announced at our conference ‘Fast Forward: Technology and Music Education’, a focus for our work in 2022 is going to be Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in the Music Education sector.
We believe that building an inclusive sector is something we must all be constantly striving towards. Everyone has an equal right to make music and to be a part of the industry. Talk into Action takes a collaborative and intersectional approach as to how EDI can be delivered across workforce, governance, programming and of course, for the children and young people we serve. We are working with colleagues across the sector and invite you and your organisation to sign the pledge to put Talk into Action here: musicmark.org.uk/talkintoaction
22 music education organisations have already pledged to put talk into action:
- Accent MEH
- Berkshire Maestros
- Bury Music Service
- Calderdale Music
- Changing Tracks
- Drake Music
- Evolve Music
- Inspiring Music in Central Bedfordshire
- Kelly-Jo Foster Peters
- Lancaster School
- Manor School
- Merton Music Foundation
- Music Masters
- MyHub Manchester Music
- One Education Music
- Orchestras for All
- Rochdale Music Service
- Sound Connections
- St Mary’s Catholic Primary Academy
- Waltham Forest Music Service
- West Sussex Music
- Youth Music
Our CEO Bridget Whyte said at the launch of Talk into Action:
Following some pilot research in London carried out by Sam Stimpson, around racial diversity in the workforce Sam wrote a great report stating that whilst many in the music education sector are developing plans for equity, diversity and inclusion, there is a need to turn talk into action. We’ve taken that thought, expanded on it and are excited to announce that 2022 will be a year of Talk into Action. There is quite a lot behind this statement, and we have been working with colleagues – including a national working group of experts – to explore what this might look like in reality.
My husband and I often laugh at the cliché when we watch a programme like Masterchef or the great British bake off and a contestant or the presenter talk about someone ‘going on a journey’…. But actually, that’s exactly what we’re going to do in 2022 and we’d like to invite you to come with us on that journey, moving from talking about EDI to acting upon it.
We have created a page on our website where we invite you along with colleagues from across the sector to pledge to put Talk into Action across all aspects of your organisation including workforce, governance, programming and of course children and young people. There are some resources available to support you, with more to come.
We know that there is significant work already going on and we want to celebrate that, but also to encourage everyone to move further forward – including doing so ourselves. Indeed, at Music Mark we know we are not experts in EDI which is why we pulled together a national working group, and with their help we are planning to widen our networks, seeking advice and guidance from other organisations, from consultants, from teachers and musical leaders, those with lived experiences and of course young people too. All of whom we know will be able to support our plans and challenge us.
Having a year of ‘Talk into Action’ makes it logical for the theme of the 2022 conference to be EDI. Are you ready to come on a journey with us? Let’s all turn more of our talk into action around Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in the year to come.