MUSIC lessons in Kirklees schools are to get a £10,000 cash boost.
The cash will come from the Department for Education and Skills, as part of the Government's Wider Opportunities scheme, which encourages primary school children to learn music.
The cash is being given to the Kirklees Local Education Authority so it can build on a successful pilot scheme, which aimed to increase music in schools.
Kirklees Council was one of 13 education authorities that took part in the Wider Opportunities pilot scheme.
The pilots started in September 2002 and involved children aged seven to 11 in primary schools around the area, including Kirklees.
Pupils were introduced to a wide range of music, including classical, pop, folk and jazz.
Some learned to play instruments and compose and some learnt to sing.
Music skills were learnt during a series of school visits from professional musicians.
The 13 pilot schemes were evaluated by inspection body Ofsted, who endorsed the Government's claim that music makes staff and students more creative and helps them achieve higher standards.
Schools standards minister, David Miliband, said: "We want every child to experience the power of music and to awaken an interest they will value for life.
"It gives children the joy of discovery and the chance to be creative, but also contributes to higher standards, self-confidence and motivation."
The Government is now giving £10,000 to each LEA that undertook the pilot, so they can build on their success.
LEAs which did not take part will also get cash to introduce some of the successful practices into their schools.
Mr Miliband was speaking at the London Barbican centre last week, where the Music for Life festival was taking place.
The event featured young performers who took part in the pilot and included the launch of a DVD called Tuning In, which details Ofsted's evaluation of the pilot schemes.
Ofsted's Chief Inspector of Schools, David Bell, said the best pilot schemes allowed pupils to experiment with vocals, compose their own material and to improvise with music.
He said: "Teaching and learning standards are higher where there are successful new partnerships between school staff, music service tutors and professional musicians.
"The majority of the Wider Opportunities pilots have produced high-quality work by skilfully combining the teaching of musical skills, new musical experiences, and specialist tuition into one effective programme."