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Wigan Music Service offers an 'Assisted Tuition Scheme' to help with the costs of music lessons, ensemble fees and instrument hire. The scheme aims to support those families who do not have the means to fully support a child’s musical leaning. You can find out how to apply here.

The service also operates an 'Assisted Purchase Scheme' which allows families to purchase a musical insturment for their child at EX-VAT prices and with a significant educational discount from our trusted supplier.

About the scheme

This scheme was introduced in September 2012 as a means of contributing to the cost of learning to play for those families who may not have the means to fully support a child’s musical learning. The funding is allocated by Wigan Council Music Service, with the help of a generous donation by local residents and music education supporters John and Barbara O’Neil, in response to the government’s National Plan for Music Education which clearly advocates the availability of affordable progression pathways for all pupils.

This scheme supports instrumental music provision provided by Wigan Music Service only. You cannot use it to apply for support for private tuition or activities run by other providers.


How do I apply?

Applications are made through a paper application form which is available by calling Wigan Music Service on 01942 776169. Please ask for an ‘Assisted Tuition Scheme application form’. The form will be posted to you. You need to complete the application form and get it signed by your child’s head teacher who will verify that to their knowledge, the information you have provided is correct.

Completed forms should be sent by your child's Headteacher to
David Little, Performing Arts Centre, Park Rd, Hindley, Wigan, WN2 3RY.
Please mark your envelope ‘CONFIDENTIAL’

How much financial support is available?

The amount of support available will vary depending on a family’s financial circumstances, the help that is requested in the application form and the perceived commitment that the pupil has to learning to play/sing. The scheme acknowledges that the cost of supporting a child’s music education can increase as they progress and may require additional tuition / become members of ensembles.

Which activities / services can I get support with?

• Weekly instrumental lessons
• Music Centre Subscriptions and associated events
• Instrument hire

Assistance with graded music examination fees is available for pupils receiving free school meals. This support will be dealt with outside of the Assisted Tuition Scheme. Please contact the Head of Music Service on 01942 776169 for information.

Who will decide whether I am eligible to access the scheme?

The ATS panel will decide. The panel will be made up of music service managers and an independent member.

How will the panel decide whether I am eligible?

It is important that the limited funding goes to those pupils and families who will make the very most of the opportunities it makes possible. The panel will refer to the details you provide in your application form and the reference from your child’s Headteacher. They may also enquire to your child’s instrumental teacher and use their own knowledge of your child’s engagement with ensembles and other music service activities.

Will I be able to receive ‘back pay’ for any tuition or services I have received prior to this application?

NO. The scheme will only provide assistance for future provision and services

If I am successful in my application, how will I receive my financial support?

Parents will not receive any money. If you are successful in applying for help with tuition costs for instrumental lessons received in school, we will communicate with your child’s school to let them know that they should not request payments for these lessons.

If you are applying for support for lessons delivered at Music Centres, for ensemble fees, or for Instrument hire costs, you will not receive bills from the music service for these directly provided services for the duration of the support agreed as part of a successful application.

How long will the support last?

Normally, regardless of when support begins, it will be agreed until the end of the current academic year. You will be invited to re-apply for the new academic year if your circumstances remain the same. If you do not re-apply, charges will default back to normal. We will write to you in July to remind you about this. The amount of available funding for this scheme and your personal circumstances may change in future years. Therefore, there is no guarantee that future applications for the same support will be successful.

How will I know if I have been successful?

We will write to you with the outcome of your application immediately after the meeting of the ATS decision panel.

Who can I call if I have questions?

Your initial questions should be directed towards Emma Cozens (Music Service Admin) on 01942 776169. Should you have a music specific or sensitive query, you can ask to speak to a member of the service management team on the same number.

Will my application will be dealt with confidentially?

Yes. The information you provide will be viewed only by the ATS panel and your child’s Headteacher. In addition we will verify any information relating to benefit eligibility with departments within Wigan Council but no financial information relating to these benefits will be disclosed or indeed required.

Application forms will be retained by the Music Service and dealt with according to the Wigan Council data protection policy.
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