Thanks to funding from The Hamish Ogston Foundation, Diocese of Leeds Music is delighted to announce that it is now expanding its award-winning Schools Singing Programme across Yorkshire and replicating it in every Catholic diocese in the UK to create the National Schools Singing Programme.
The funding is restricted to the specific purpose of financing Choral Director, Instrumental Tutor and Assistant Director roles to double the number of schools in our own Diocesan Schools Singing Programme, as well as enabling Catholic schools in other dioceses to share in the seed funding to create or enhance their own singing programmes.
The educational, social, and health benefits of children’s choral singing are well researched by educationalists, and in areas of the greatest economic deprivation, parents and teachers alike have been delighted at children’s increased confidence, engagement and academic attainment, including literacy, numeracy, team-work – plus an excellent record of Oxbridge success. One head teacher of a Catholic primary school in Leeds said of the in-person classes:
Our morning sessions fill the school with beautiful singing that uplifts all who hear it. The difference made to the quality of the children’s singing, self-esteem and confidence is immeasurable. The programme has had a brilliant impact on the quality of work from the pupils, in all subjects – not only in music and church life.
Another message of thanks from a Catholic parent enjoying the post-lockdown singing sessions via the Royal Philharmonic Society Award-winning innovation of the Diocese of Leeds Schools Singing Programme’s YouTube Channel said:
I can’t thank you enough for the engagement and creativity and wonderful singing of your virtual singing lessons. I have passed on your links to all I know in education. I so SO wish my children could access daily singing lessons in school. It has been so good for confidence and diction and fun for the two nine year olds I’m helping to home educate.
More information about the new National Schools Singing Programme can be found on The Hamish Ogston Foundation website.