In a letter to The Times today, Julian Lloyd Webber –the Chairman of In Harmony Sistema England, the charity that supports the In Harmony social and music education projects– has called for the Government to include creative subjects in the English baccalaureate. Together with other leading musicians including violinist Nicola Benedetti and conductors Sir Colin Davis and Sir Simon Rattle, Lloyd Webber writes:
“We remain deeply concerned at the continued absence of creative subjects from the English Baccalaureate’s (EBacc) pillars of study. The International Baccalaureate – a respected, challenging and rigorous qualification – includes a sixth pillar of creative, intellectually rigorous subject options and we are asking for the EBacc to do the same.”
Today Lloyd Webber also points to the positive results achieved during the last three years with the In Harmony programme. He quoted the findings on an independent report on the Liverpool project, which states that increased musical education can lead to “improved academic attainment in other core curriculum areas, as well as a potential powerful model for social change and the generation of social capital.”
“The arts have a huge life-improving potential and therefore they should be in the core curriculum; we cannot relegate them to some backwater. If the EBacc does not have a sixth pillar for the arts we are going to miss out on a huge amount of talent in this country”.
In Harmony Sistema England believes the Government must follow the advice of Darren Henley’s Review of Cultural Education, which was commissioned by the Department for Education in 2011, and include creative subjects in the EBacc as a sixth option.