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Portsmouth Music Service was one of the first in the country to embrace

the Yamaha Jazz Experience

project last year. Since then we’ve discovered that partnership working firmly is its DNA, and we decided to investigate further...


e believe that teachers who are inspired, motivated and enthused

provide even better music for their students. It is the music service’s role to provide the inspiration and leadership to ensure that teachers receive the most appropriate training from the best quality providers,” says Sue Beckett, head of Portsmouth Music Service. With a focus on ensuring longer-term benefits for its stakeholders and customers it is working on a range of initiatives. A core strategy for Portsmouth Music Service – a 2009 Diploma of Special Merit winner in the National Music Council’s Local Authority Music Awards – can be seen in its enthusiastic implementation of key national initiatives, like Sing Up and Wider Opportunities (in which it has successfully engaged more than 82 percent of its primary schools). The result of this has been recognition for its transformational impact on schools across the city and beyond, in a region that has perhaps more than its fair share of economic and social hardships. It provides a wealth of publications for schools, both in the city and the Solent region, which enable primary teachers to deliver new ideas with

Partnerships in Portsmouth

confidence. The latest KS1 & 2 song book/CD package, entitled

The Very Fat Crab, contains more

than 20 new songs, which have already been aired on radio and television across the country. Other notable continuing initiatives include a Dads and Lads workshop, community choir and, of course, a full range of ensembles and performance opportunities for its young people.

young people to fulfil the curriculum aims and become:  successful learners who enjoy learning, make progress and achieve

 confident individuals who are able to live safe, healthy and fulfilling lives

 responsible citizens who make a positive contribution to society

Sue Beckett

Solent Solidarity

In March Portsmouth hosted an action-packed conference, which was aimed at developing musical skills of the teaching workforce, ready for the introduction of the new primary curriculum in September 2011. This conference is part of the work of Solent Music, a highly successful and nationally acclaimed partnership between music services from Portsmouth, Southampton and the Isle of Wight.

In the new primary curriculum, music lies within ‘Understanding the Arts’. The themes throughout the conference workshops showed how music can enable

Portsmouth Music Service is the area leader for Sing Up in the Solent and the conference was part of the planned, integrated Sing Up training programme for teachers in the region – an excellent example of how Sing Up can work hand-in-hand with local authorities, through partnership work with music services. The vocal workshops were planned to link to Sing Up priorities, and covered a range of key topics, including inspiring boys to sing. In addition to this there were singing opportunities throughout the day as all 120 delegates raised their voices in song at the start and end of the conference. Delegates had the choice of over twenty workshops throughout the day, with a final session in which all 120 delegates participated in a pulsating Taiko drumming session, led by Kagemusha Taiko. The Solent music services are together investing in Taiko drums to further expand the excellent provision for world music in the region, for which they are already well known.

Yamaha’s Bill Martin, who is also Honorary Treasurer for the Music Education Council – the music education community’s umbrella body – attended the conference and said: ‘It was a conference that clearly catered for the needs and aspirations of a broad range of music education professionals. There was a real buzz of excitement from delegates – a refreshing optimism and positive spirit in the face of current threats regarding the future funding of music education. Through activities like this, Portsmouth music service is certainly at the leading edge of visionary music training that inspires, enthuses and celebrates music education at its best. Yamaha looks forward to working more closely with them in the future.’ New primary curriculum - culum/


‘This is the best music conference I have ever attended. The speakers were inspirational, the workshops were fantastic and so diverse. I can’t wait to get back into school and share all these excellent ideas with the staff and pupils!’ Alison Spittles,

headteacher, Goldsmith Infant School, Portsmouth.

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