A PROJECT that uses music to help engage pupils in school is being launched in Southampton.

Students at Woodlands Community College and Rosewood Free School are set to benefit from a £120,000 grant awarded by the National Foundation for Youth Music that will fund the scheme.

The SoCo Music Project will be running the four-year music programme at the schools for children living in challenging circumstances.

The scheme aims to show how high quality music practice, normally used in out of school settings, can help children to engage with the school curriculum, specifically in relation to literacy and numeracy, along with information and computer technology.

Up to a hundred children are set to benefit, with music sessions taking place in school, SoCo’s recording studio and other music venues. The programme will be supported by Richard Taunton’s Sixth Form College and researchers at Winchester University.

Musical activities will include learning about recording and music production, instrumental tuition, singing and songwriting whilst participants will be encouraged to work towards attaining an Arts Award.

Music leaders and school music staff will be offered specialist training as part of the project, with opportunities to share best teaching practice and produce new teaching resources.

Matt Salvage, director of SoCo Music Project says: “We’re very excited to be part of the Exchanging Notes programme as one of ten organisations nationwide. It’s a great opportunity to extend our partnerships with schools in Southampton and work on a programme that focuses on inspirational and innovative music delivery over a four year period.

“We’re keen to get started and look forward to providing some great opportunities for young people in the city and sharing what we learn as the project progresses.”