Instrumental and vocal music services for pupils in Bracknell Forest council schools are provided through a contract with Berkshire Maestros. They have a national reputation for promoting opportunity for all and excellence.
Lessons are available on a range of instruments, as well as the voice. These take place in groups or individually. There are also opportunities to play and sing with others in choirs, bands, orchestras, jazz and rock groups at dedicated local music centres.
Lessons and other activities take place at primary and secondary schools and, out of school time, at the Bracknell Music Centre (located at the Open Learning Centre, Brakenhale School).
Berkshire Maestros offers the following services for children attending maintained schools in the borough:
- individual and group tuition on strings, woodwind, brass, percussion, guitar, keyboard, voice
- workshops and courses in a range of musical genres including popular and world music
- County Achievement Scheme, available to gifted and talented pupils by audition
- county choirs, bands and orchestras
- live music events (concerts and workshops)
- festivals and special events both locally and in prestigious venues
- wider opportunities projects – including workshops and whole class taster courses on a wide range of instruments – provided free of charge to schools
The Bracknell Forest contract is mainly funded through a government grant. The funding is used to:
- subsidise the cost of tuition and musical ensembles to encourage more pupils to take part
- provide fee remission for pupils whose families are on income support or similar
- provide some fee relief towards talented pupils who undertake a large number of activities
- provide other music education projects that widen access and allow more pupils to participate
- provide short concerts in schools