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Music Network is to manage a major philanthropic gift for music education in Ireland. €5 million has been donated by U2 and a further €2 million pledged by The Ireland Funds to allow a national system of music education provision to be rolled out between 2010 and 2015. Music Network will administer the scheme, which will be rolled out on a phased basis, in a number of new locations each year, beginning in 2010 and including all musical genres.

“This gift allows us to implement a planned, integrated approach to music education at a national level so that the potential and talent of our young people can be developed. The roll-out of our model will make an important contribution to music in Ireland and to educational provision generally,” Deirdre McCrea, Music Network CEO explained.

The Edge, speaking on behalf of U2 during the late July announcement of the initiative, said: “Being around music at a young age was important for us and we were lucky to have it at school. “We had been looking for some time for a way to get involved in an initiative in music education in Ireland. After talking to various people in Ireland about what to do, we came to the conclusion that the Music Network scheme is really well thought out and that we, in partnership with the Ireland Funds, should just get behind it.”

Loretta Brennan Glucksman, Chair of The American Ireland Fund, explained, “Our goal is to stimulate philanthropy in Ireland and the scheme falls under two of our funding priorities; education and culture. We are thrilled to be part of a project, which will bring the Music Network Scheme nationwide as it is a proven success and has wide-ranging support from Government as well as the music education establishment. We believe that the programme will make a huge contribution to music education in Ireland.”

The Minister for Education and Science, Batt O’Keeffe TD, added that “We are very grateful for the support of U2 and The Ireland Fund for the programme over the next six years. It has the potential to create a true legacy for music education in Ireland.”

Involvement in the scheme will be offered on the basis of competitive tender. Local interests (for example one or more local VEC’s and/ or local authorities, local private music schools, parents groups etc.) will be invited to bid for a three-year subsidy to provide for the costs of teachers and local administration; they must show how they will generate matching resources locally, and how they will plan to make the scheme sustainable in the longer term.

Permalink - Posted: July 28, 2009 at 12:46 pm