An action research partner - scroll to the end for information about their project.

Why did you become involved with Changing Tracks?

To develop our inclusion work across Hull Music Service. We wanted to explore the barriers children and young people face in accessing music making and use this to shape the opportunities that we provide.

How are you improving equality, diversity and inclusion in your organisation?

  • Staff awareness – working remotely during the pandemic has highlighted huge inequalities in accessing education for many families in Hull. Not being able to teach in schools demonstrates the huge role schools play in providing opportunities in our City – for most children this is the only chance they have to access music making. We have created a range of resources that can be accessed on all platforms, set up a grant scheme to buy devices, data and equipment.
  • Alternative provision – we have started a range of enrichment projects working in PRUs and with specialist SEND provision in mainstream schools. This is providing professional development for our staff as well as exploring the social impact of engaging in music.
  • Engagement with schools – we are using our learning from pilot projects to inform schools about the impacts of musical activities for all children and breaking down the perceptions around who can take part in instrumental music lessons. Our attainment data demonstrates a huge impact on outcomes for children with SEND and those from deprived areas.

Have you been focusing on improving any specific areas of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion?

The pandemic has highlighted the huge role schools play in providing opportunities to pupils.  In this project, we are exploring access to music for all pupils within schools and alternative provision settings and have targeted PRUs and SEND provision.  We are also tracking who is accessing our online provision to highlight schools and areas where access is more difficult.

We have created space for our partners to deliver work in our music centre. There is a specific afternoon and evening for this allowing young people to access broader musical genres and 1:1 provision to support wellbeing.

What difference has your involvement with Changing Tracks made to the work of your music service so far?

While the pandemic has changed many of our original plans for this project, the ED and I self-assessment tool and the network meetings have informed many of our discussions around planning for the future. The inequalities are stark and we are using ED and I to develop a recovery plan that impacts the wellbeing of our young people. Future projects will be informed by inclusion, many of our online ensembles are informed much more by youth voice and we will use this to shape the future provision for ensemble music making. The inequalities around access to opportunities show that the school is key and we are building access around schools and involving communities. The long-term impact on both attainment and wellbeing is huge, we are planning projects and nurture groups that address some of these issues through music making.

As an action research partner, what is your research question or what do you hope to find out?

What are the real barriers to participation in music activities for young people in Hull?

Through this research, we want to find out what why young people don’t participate in music activities and check our own perceptions for this with the responses of participants across the city.

We are working in PRUs and SEND settings in mainstream schools delivering enrichment programmes that promote social outcomes. These programmes are taking place in primary and secondary settings and focus on engaging young people in learning and improving school attendance. The pandemic has changed how we are engaging with young people in Hull. Online delivery and blended learning have highlighted huge inequalities across the city. We will be doing our youth voice activities through online questionnaires and online forums. The impact on our service has been huge and we will use these responses to rebuild our work and ensure that projects, performances and rehearsals are created for and with the young people we teach.

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