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Consult before thedecision is made

By West Briton  |  Posted: May 15, 2014

By James Sargent

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ON THE face of it, judging from your piece in the edition of May 1, page 4, Cornwall Council is looking at the future of music tuition in about 200 schools, affecting thousands of pupils, and the livelihood and morale of many teachers.

This tuition forms the foundation of Music Cornwall.

The implication is, that the council is also looking at the future of some 20 area ensembles spread across the county, representing a wide variety of musical styles.

At the top of this broadly-based pyramid are the Cornwall Youth Jazz Orchestra, Brass Band, Wind Orchestra and CYO: an orchestra of symphonic proportions, all of which have excelled consistently in performance at national level, and which all contribute regularly to the quality of community life here.

There is so much more than this.

May I invite readers to look at the website www.musiccornwall.org if you are not familiar with it?

It is a priceless cultural inheritance for Cornwall, and an invaluable resource.

Cabinet councillors, understandably, in view of continuing government cuts, are looking for a new, sustainable model, or framework, which can deliver these services with minimal cost to the council budget.

The council spokesman suggests in your article that a consultation with staff will take place after a decision has been made.

Would it not be preferable for, say, a working group of Cabinet or council members to meet all parties concerned – parents, schools, and staff – before a decision is made?

It is possible they might know best how to preserve a service at minimal cost to the county budget, while remaining within Cornwall Council.

That approach might take some of the sting out of the nettle.

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