Teaching without music education (again)?

31 Oct 2020


An open letter from the Association of Music Teachers to the proposal to temporarily abolish the teaching of music education

Dear Minister,

we contact you due to the current proposal to temporarily cancel the teaching of music education in Czech schools. We support your efforts to eliminate the risk of spreading COVID-19 in schools, but in agreement with music experts, we consider the planned solution to be unfortunate and superfluous. Modern music education is not just about singing. The subject includes a wide range of activities and forms of work such as listening and reflection on music, playing musical instruments, teaching music history and theory, which can be practiced as in other subjects with the mouth and nose covered with a veil. When the epidemiological situation worsens, it is not a problem for teachers to use any of these activities in their teaching and to postpone singing until the acute risks have passed. From the point of view of education, this is only a partial, temporary change, which does not fundamentally affect the educational content of the subject or the quality of teaching. We also proceeded similarly in the case of spring distance learning. We are convinced that even in today's difficult times, music education has an irreplaceable place in the educational system. If our education does not want to resign under the pressure of circumstances to its mission of educating a fully equipped personality, including its emotional, creative and social aspects, let music education space to shape the student through the above activities, many of which can be realized by distance. Thanks to this, the school can remain a living community of students and teachers, which unite common experiences, relationships and interests. We are convinced that the abolition of aesthetic subjects, even if only temporarily, will have unfortunate consequences for our pupils and for the whole school system.

PhDr. Milan Motl, Ph.D.

Association of Music Teachers

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