Music has charms to improve school results

Music has charms to improve school results, says professor

Literacy and numeracy rates would be improved significantly by overhauling the school curriculum to make more room for performing arts, according to one of Australia’s top education experts.

At a parliamentary inquiry this Wednesday, leading researcher Brian Caldwell will tell state MPs taxpayer money is wasted every year trying to lift student performance through flawed methods, when evidence suggests that music is a key contributor to better results.

”We’ve spent hundreds of millions of dollars trying to improve literacy and numeracy, but if we just got a better balance in the way we spent our money and put priority on the arts – including music education – we’d make a profound difference across the country,” said Professor Caldwell, a former dean at Melbourne University and now the head of consultancy group Educational Transformations.

Professor Caldwell’s views are based on a ground-breaking study he conducted two years ago, which evaluated a music program run by the Song Room, a non-profit organisation that provides arts teaching to students in disadvantaged schools.
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By Farrah Tomazin. The Age. 24 March 2013


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