Strung up over music tuition cuts
Charges could be breach of UN
Cuts to school music tuition could be breaking a top human rights law, council bosses have been warned.
South Ayrshire’s decision to axe free lessons may be in breach of UN rules.
The claim, made by the Children and Young Person’s Commissioner for Scotland, comes as pressure mounts for a climb down at County Buildings.
In a starkly worded letter seen by the Ayrshire Post, council leaders have been asked to justify their controversial move.
“The Commissioner has been informed that there has not been any consultation with children and young people in considering this proposal, nor is it clear whether any child right’s impact assessment has been carried out,” it states.
The letter, to council leader Douglas Campbell, expresses concern at South Ayrshire’s apparent lack of engagement with those affected by the cull.
The sum of £ 46,000 will be saved when the council begins charging for lessons this August.
Families will now have to pay £ 200 per year for their first child to receive instrument tuition.
Critics have labelled the move as “means tested music,” while high profile figures such as Nicola Benedetti have backed a petition against the charges.
Nick Hobbs, head of Advice and Investigations at the Commissioners’ office, is now probing the council for answers.
Tory leader Martin Dowey, who heads up the council’s opposition group, said: “It’s high time for some accountability here.
“This intervention is one that the administration cannot ignore and the many affected families deserve the proper response.
“Reversing this decision is the only sensible option.”
A council spokesman said: “We receive lots of letters and always respond directly.”
Music support Nicola Benedetti