Jane Humberstone spoke on behalf of the petitioners at the full council meeting on 10 July. She implored the council to take into consideration the £202k of savings already made. Cllr Standley’s correction to the petition detailed that the savings required are £180K. It would seem ridiculous to enforce the redundancies of 70 teachers and deny 3000 children tuition on this basis.
However, a motion to welcome the steps already taken to create a realistic, sustainable future for the instrumental service was passed. Nevertheless, we are still unclear whether this is still a move to separate the instrumental service from the other services provided by the music hub – ensembles, and whole class opportunities.
As Cllr John Barnes said, the private market will not cope. Ensembles and school services will crumble without instrumental tuition.
Cllr Godfrey Daniels also mentioned that the discontinuation of the Music Management Committee in 2017 could be seen to have been a pre-emptive strike. This committee of elected councillors had important stewardship and oversight of the running of the service and its charitable trust – the East Sussex Music Trust. Members of the committee have been surprised to learn that the committee no longer exists and that the sole trustee is now Stuart Gallimore, Head of Children’s Services.
Clarity is being saught.
You can read Jane’s address to the council here: and watch the webcast of the council meeting here: www.eastsussex.gov.uk/yourcouncil/webcasts/default.htm