Received from: MU
Pay and conditions for instrumental and vocal teachers (known as visiting music teachers or VMTs) are unregulated and vary enormously.
There is no standard framework for engaging them and most are not covered by schoolteachers’ pay and conditions. This makes VMTs a poor relation among teachers, mainly paid by the hour and only for direct contact time with pupils. Breaks and preparation are usually unpaid, as is travel between schools which is a regular feature of the working day.
Some VMTs are forced on to dubious self-employed agreements, while other are engaged on precarious zero-hour contracts. Rates of pay have barely increased over the last decade.
Many music education hubs (Department for Education-funded providers of instrumental lessons in schools) have permanent vacancies for VMTs, who are increasingly migrating to the private sector. This undermines UK governments’ policies on music education – particularly Wales and England, which have both published music education plans this year that promise instrumental lessons for all children. Wales has at least pledged to review VMTs’ terms, while England is currently doing nothing to address the issue.
Congress calls on the General Council to support the Musicians’ Union in asking for UK governments to develop a pay and conditions framework for VMTs to ensure they are treated equitably and recognised properly.