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‘Me’ Framework of Wider Development

The first iterations of the Sounds of Intent Framework consciously avoided reference to other-than-musical forms of engagement, as an antidote to the tendency of educators at the turn of the century who were working with pupils and students who had learning difficulties to refer to anything except music in their music reports and assessments. Indeed, this tendency was embodied in the UK Government’s documentation – the so-called ‘P-Scales’ – relating to the education of children and young people with severe or profound and multiple learning difficulties. This focus on extra-musical factors may have arisen as a consequence of the fact that, in the UK, as children and young people with profound disabilities were welcomed into schools for the first time in the 1980s, appropriate music provision for them was largely (if not entirely) regarded as being therapeutic in nature. That is, their musical experiences were seen as seen as benefiting them primarily in extra-musical ways, and their engagement and progress in music tended to be measured in terms of extra-musical goals. Having made the case for those with severe, or profound and multiple learning difficulties to be educated first and foremost in music, rather than regarding music principally as a means to other support other educational ends, the Sounds of Intent team re-introduced the notion of education through music in the form of the ‘Me’ Framework of Wider Development. This has four domains: ‘me: my body’, ‘me: my thoughts and feelings’, ‘me, you and other people’ and ‘me and my world’, representing a movement from biological concerns, to the psychological, the social and, finally, the cultural. It has descriptors relating to each domain pertaining to Levels 2–4 of the main Sounds of Intent Framework. [DOC 69] Each pertains to one of three sub-levels of engagement: ‘having a go’, got it!’ and ‘taking things further’. These correspond to the ‘emerging’, ‘achieving’ and ‘excelling’ descriptors of the music assessment matrix. [DOC 60]

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