As s Media Arts Specialist Status school, of which Music comes under this, the school is trying to promote Higher Education take up in these subjects. To this end, we have been trying to promote it by taking students to a mixture of HE open days at local universities. Thinking that I might forge some links, I decided to speak to the Admissions Tutor of the Music and Music Technology courses at the university, who informed me that: Out of 180 applications, they will interview 100 and give a measley <u>24 offers</u> (this covers all UK state and indpendent schools, as well as mature and EU and Non-EU international students) If you are one of the lucky 13% of applicants who get an offer, you'll get their standard offer of AAB. They are not considering anyone with BTEC Level 3 as (his words) 'The Lead IV system is unreliable and open to abuse' (I take offence at that, being a Lead IV myself!) This is not a Russell Group university, neither is it an Oxbridge university or Music college. This is not the only university that is doing this for Music degrees - other universities are doing the same thing. And I wouldn't be surprised if they are going to charge students the full £9000pa for the pleasure. The same happened recently with a Theatre Studies degree open day. I returned to school with a minibus full of VERY disappointed Sixth Formers, all of whom with Grade A*s, As and Bs at GCSE and predicteds of As and Bs at AS level, who are all of the opinion that there is 'no point' in continuing their studies becasue their chances of getting an offer in the first place is so slim that it's not worth it, and even if they do get an offer are going to be priced out of the market with £30k+ debt for most of their working lives. Some wished that they'd been the people causing the havoc on the Student Tuition Fees protests! I know what I am saying is probably the same across the country, and the news coverage with Student Fees means that it shouln't surprise me. I have told my SMT that we will have to manage expectations of students across the school and across all subjects very carefully and that our links with universities is going to be strained. I'd be interested as to whether anyone else has had the same sort of responses from universities regarding Music and Music Tech degrees...are we pushing our kids in the wrong directions and building them up, only to find that there is so much competition that they are almost certain to fail? Similarly, are there any HE courses which anyone has found which are more 'realistic' for students to get on?