Launch of the National Music Teachers Mentorship Pilot Programme

20 October 2014

Joint media release

Minister for the Arts
Senator the Hon George Brandis QC

Minister for Education
The Hon Christopher Pyne MP

We are delighted to announce $594,000 in funding for a new national music mentorship programme that will bring high quality music mentorship to classroom teachers across Australia.

The National Music Teachers Mentorship Pilot Programme has been developed in close consultation between the Australian Government, the Australian Youth Orchestra and Mr Richard Gill OAM. It will be hosted by the Australian Youth Orchestra who will utilise their well-established connections within the music and education sectors to deliver the programme.

Commencing in classrooms in February 2015, the programme will run for three years and establish mentoring partnerships between professional music educators and generalist classroom teachers with the goal of enriching music education in primary schools and engaging students in a quality music education.

It is anticipated that within the first 12 months of the National Music Teachers Mentorship (NMTM) Program approximately 50 teachers across Australia will have participated in this programme with the number of teachers becoming involved growing over the ensuing two years of this pilot programme.

Through the mentorship programme, teachers in schools across the country, including regional and remote areas will be equipped with additional tools for teaching music in their classrooms.

The positive academic and social impact of a quality school-based arts education has long been recognised with many demonstrated positive impacts, including on academic achievement, school attendance and social cohesion.

The National Music Mentorship Pilot Programme delivers on the Australian Government's commitment to a quality arts education, including in music, as part of Australia's National Curriculum.

The Department of Education will have invested more than $14.4 million between 2007 and 2017 to support arts education initiatives that improve access to and participation in arts education, particularly in regional areas.

We thank Mr Gill for his drive in bringing this programme to fruition. He is one of Australia's pre-eminent music educators and a long term advocate for high quality music education for youth. He is also a conductor, music director of the Victorian Opera and artistic director of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra's education programme. Mr Gill will provide leadership to the programme and direction to its delivery.