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Brighton music education project awarded £15k to support young people

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A MUSIC education project for disadvantaged children has received a grant of £15,000.

Brighton Dome and Brighton Festival’s music education service, which is led by Brighton and Hove Music and Arts (BHMA) received funding from the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation to support children who do not have access to making music.

The SoundCity Young Musicians Bursary Scheme provides high quality, free or low-cost music education and performance opportunities for young people aged between five and 19 who are in care, or whose families are on low incomes.

The grant is one of 16 awarded by the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation to projects which increase diversity in the arts.

Peter Chivers, director of BHMA, said: “This grant will enable us to continue providing high quality and inclusive music education and performance opportunities for children and young people across the city, who want to create music but might not have access because of social or financial constraints.

“We want to give children the chance to grow their creative talent regardless of their background and ability.”

Each year, 37,000 people benefit from BHMA’s creative learning opportunities, open days and music service in the city.

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Education

University of Brighton students demand compensation due to strikes

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STUDENTS are demanding compensation for missed classes during university strikes.

Staff at the University of Brighton are striking for better pay and conditions over a 14-day period between this Thursday and March 13.

Students are campaigning for compensation over the strikes, which will see them miss out on classes during a period of preparation for exams and final year dissertations.

Amelia Livingstone is a mature student in her third year, studying for a BA in history of art and design.

The 32-year-old said: “There’s no one to represent the student body in respect of these strikes and we are the ones suffering because of it.

“We support the reason why the strikes are happening but there’s been no compensation or even an apology from the vice chancellor.

“We are going to miss dissertation meetings with tutors and classes on our other module.

“I’m quite confident in my subject field but there are students who have real anxiety about their dissertation, and some might not pass because they need that extra guidance.”

A group of students called Boycott Brighton have started a petition calling on the university and its vice chancellor Debra Humphris to “resolve the ongoing issue” over staff pensions, pay and work conditions and to compensate students if strikes go ahead.

At the time of going to press, the petition had more than 1,500 signatures.

Amelia said: “We are paying almost £10,000 in fees per year and each class effectively costs us between £300 and £400.

“It’s just unacceptable. It should have been sorted out by now and it’s really sad considering the teachers are so good.

“I think the university as an institution is accountable.”

A spokesman for the University of Brighton said: “We understand students will be worried about potential disruption to their learning and teaching as a result of the further national strike action by the UCU [University and college Union].

“We expect the majority of teaching in most of our schools to go ahead as normal. Where this is not the case, our immediate priority is to minimise any disruption and to ensure that students are not disadvantaged in terms of assessment and examination outcomes.

“Any student who feels they have been materially disadvantaged as a result of the strike action can use our established complaints procedure.

“All complaints will be dealt with on their merits and, where appropriate, compensation will be given.”

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Education

Young Worthing poet publishes first book

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A COLLEGE student has published a collection of poetry.

Tom Latos, who studies English language, literature and performing arts at Worthing College, has self-published a collection of poems called Dread on Amazon.

The 16-year-old said he feels the book is a big achievement for his age.

He said: “I hope it inspires others, especially LGBT youths, to speak their truths and express their mental health through art.”

Tom, who is also a musician, was inspired to write the collection of 14 poems after a relationship ended.

He said: “Last year I was feeling low after a break-up and I wrote the poems in about nine days.

“It’s definitely my most personal collection and I so I thought, I should do something with this.”

Dread explores Tom’s experiences as a young gay person living in Worthing and he intends to partly promote the book by doing talks in schools on sexuality and mental health.

He said: “I think it’s important to talk about how to have good, safe relationships, as well as helping people who are trying to figure out their identity.

“People can find it hard to be brave enough to be themselves.

“There also needs to be a shift in the way we talk about sexuality.

“The way we see masculinity also gets in the way of how boys see themselves.

“I got a lot of harshness from boys at school who were suspicious of any difference.”

Tom has also been making pop music for two years under the name Latos Xx, and has released two albums on streaming sites.

He is currently making music videos for songs from his most recent album to release on YouTube.

Tom said: “Before this book I have released two albums digitally – my first was called Beachside Town and I released my second album last year called Sharks And Soup.

“But I have never had a physical copy of anything I’ve made before, so this feels really special.

“Mainly I just want people to feel they are heard. My biggest goal is for people to relate to the book.”

Dread is available to buy in paperback on Amazon.

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Education

Worthing pupils reach for the stars with space photographer

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