Music For Every Child, Every Week

A plea to all BUMS to support this important campaign from Ian Phillips.

I am a Primary School Music Teacher and have been passionate about my job for 30 years now. Not only has my passion been with children but with adults alike. Leading the Cage for so many years has certainly been a highlight for me.

Music for me has been enlightening. It is one of those subjects that allows us to be human; allows us to express feeling; and allows us to be critical.

Research about the benefits of music in our lives is enormous. One does not have to delve far when googling this on the internet to find the benefits of Music.

Back to the days of Plato it was noted by Plato himself that: I would teach children music, physics and philosophy; but more importantly music; for in the patterns of music and all the arts, are the keys to learning.

It is true to say that:

  • Music improves confidence, self-expression and fosters creativity.
  • Music promotes teamwork and collaboration.
  • Music develops neural pathways and enhances brain function.

Source: Music Education | Music Australia

SPRUKE 2019 Schools Concert finale, a massed ensemble showcasing primary school musicians and their teachers.

Queensland has led the way I believe in Music Education. When I began teaching, every Queensland school had a music teacher who not only taught music to children but also empowered classroom teachers to teach music in their classes.

I am pleased to be part of a campaign within the Qld Teachers’ Union called “Music For Every Child Every Week”. Here is some of the information they have put together about the precarious state of Music Education in Qld.

Since the 1970s, Queensland has led the way in providing an in-depth study of music for children in classrooms and through world class Instrumental Music programs. These world-class comprehensive programs can only be provided if Music is continuous – every week of the year for every student. Unfortunately, Music Programs are being diminished in some primary schools.

Today’s issues

  • Music education is being reduced
  • With Classroom Music programs being cut at some schools around Queensland, the question of equity for all students is raised. Every student deserves access to sequential, continuous Music learning throughout their primary years. It should not depend on which school you attend.
  • Students in State Schools should have access to Music education – Every Child, Every Week. An understanding of Music Education, the effective teaching of a metalanguage, sound and symbol system (similar to the teaching of a language) is a very specialised area of teaching that takes many years of training to master and these skills should be valued, not minimised.
  • Without continuous (every week for every student) classroom Music programs as the foundation, the Instrumental Music Program can not be as successfully implemented and this, in turn impacts Instrumental Music staff.

We are campaigning to reinstate Music Education programs in Qld State Primary Schools. As part of that campaign (Music for Every Child, Every Week) and in conjunction with the Qld Teachers’ Union, we are asking people to sign a pledge. We are hoping to get many well-known musicians, politicians, music educators, researchers and people of influence in our field to sign this pledge. Community groups like BUMS fall into this category.

We need you to support the campaign.

  • Firstly, imagine how ukulele playing and music has made a major improvement in your life.
  • Imagine what it would be like if you had the opportunity to learn music every week of your primary school life. How might that have changed your life?
  • Imagine what it would be like not having the true value of the arts that helps us to become human. What society would we be today?

I will be seen at upcoming jams to talk about this further and hear your stories on how music has not only empowered but enlightened your life. I am hoping to gain photos of us signing the pledge to be uploaded onto social media.

I am more than happy to be contacted should you require more information. My email is ">


Download The Music for Every Child Every Week Pledge to print

Download PDF Music for Every Child, Every Week One Page (1) with more information from Qld Teachers’ Union

Music For Every Child Every Week Facebook Page 


Ian Phillips is the current leader of the BUMS Inc community band Four String Collective, and jam set-leader. He is a life member (2020), a past President of BUMS (2015-2017), past leader of The Cage community band , and Kids UkeFest innovator.