West Lothian Conservatives are dismayed at the outcomes of the Instrumental Music Service review paper at the Education Policy PDSP on 13th March 2018 which has confirmed a complete cessation of String and Percussion tuition across West Lothian Schools as an extracurricular activity.
Whilst any changes in this area were regrettable, we did appreciate the model in which the service was being delivered did require revision. However, the intention to completely remove any aspect of the Instrumental Music Service has never had the support of the Conservative Group of Councillors on West Lothian Council.
We recognise the massive benefits such activities have, in personal development, in achieving new skills and opportunities for careers to name a few.
We unfortunately recognise that the 6-month ruling of Council standing orders does apply in this case and have therefore recommended and will continue to recommend and demand the following:
Head Teachers are immediately given full support by the Council to identify methods to fund and deliver the continuation of the services currently provided by the IMS.
Following the period of 6 months from the budget meeting in February, West Lothian Council are to identify methods to raise funding in order to provide String and Percussion tuition to the same levels as other musical instrument tuition.
We do not seek to score political points in this process, rather our aim is to maintain IMS in a sustainable format for those wanting String and Percussion tuition so they can have the same opportunities enjoyed by pupils in other disciplines, such as Brass and Wind.