I’m currently involved in putting together the programme for a new conference/trade event for music teachers (www.musiceducationexpo.co.uk). As well as trying to focus on practical, useful content that teachers can take back their schools/studios, I have been investigating the possibility of linking as many sessions as possible to some form of CPD accreditation.
My own background in music education is as an instrumental/peri teacher, so I know how informal CDP accreditation in this sector can be. Various bodies offer useful and interesting CPD for instrumental teachers that often lead to some kind of niche qualification, and it’s all good stuff for the CV. But it makes me wonder whether it would be better to have a more structured CPD framework for qualification providers to link into?
Also in the back of my mind is the new Qualified Music Educator award, suggested by the government’s National Plan for Music. This doesn’t exist yet, but the Arts Council is in charge of it and discussions about what it will look like have now begun. Whether the Arts Council has the resources to do it justice is uncertain, but I know that some bright and experienced people have been brought on board to help out.
QME may have been suggested to regulate teachers, but it is also an opportunity to improve on the CPD that is currently available. I can’t helping thinking that QME will need to exist in different versions (no information about what it might look like has so far been given). An early years specialist should not have to work through modules on instrumental teaching technique or inclusion at secondary level, for example. Another thought is that QME might be better off as an umbrella structure for existing qualifications. Might it be an idea, then, for there to be several pathways of QME – early years, SEN, primary, etc – with each drawing in the best of the available qualifications and supplying extra modules where needed?