Sadly, Victorian dance studios and performing arts schools are grappling with another lock down, after only just recently being able to return to face to face classes after the earlier COVID 19 closures. Due to the disruption and the difficulties associated with online dance learning, many studio owners are once again experiencing large loss of students and financial hardship, compounded by the very challenging last term.
A petition has just been created to help Victorian dance studios, and we need you to sign it! SIGN HERE NOW
Here’s the Petition outline, direct from Change.org:
We are calling on the Victorian government to urgently:
– Recognise dance and performing arts studios as a unique and important industry contributing to physical, mental health, education and recreation outcomes for Victorian children and young adults
– Acknowledge and backdate funding support for studios who have missed out on Federal Government support through no fault of their own
– Provide urgent tailored funding support to the dance and performing arts school industry as a one-off cash boost based on pre-COVID turnover
– Provide second lockdown support for Metro studios including JobKeeper top-up from 1 Oct to 31 Dec and rent relief extension from 1 Oct to 31 Dec
We represent the 1000 dance and performing arts schools across Victoria that teach over 150,000 Victorian children and provide employment to over 7500 Victorians. Aside from swimming, we are the most popular activity for girls in the state but we have been left to fend for ourselves.
Many of our studios provide:
– Nationally Recognised Training (up to Advanced Diploma) and VCE VET courses, yet we do not receive school funding support
– Team training, yet we we do not receive sport funding support
– Arts and theatre studies and practical skills, yet we do not receive arts funding support
The Victorian Government needs to urgently recognise that we are a unique industry and provide support to ensure we are able to keep providing dance and performing arts education and life skills in leadership, teamwork, creativity and time management to Victorian children.
Incorrect funding support
Federal Government support of JobKeeper and Rent Relief has been denied to any studio who solely provide teaching to contract staff (nb: even if a studio meets its requirements by offering employment, many teachers who contract to multiple studios have opted to remain independent, thereby forcing studios into a position they are not classified as employers). For those studios lucky enough to have obtained support, it is not enough to keep businesses operational.
Worse still are the studios in Metro Melbourne who are in a second lockdown. A $5000 Business Victoria grant (again, only accessible by certain studios) hardly makes a dint in the debt studios are amassing. Many inner Melbourne studios are paying in excess of $10,000 a month in rent alone.
Many industries in Victoria have already received tailored funding support including construction, sports, hospitality and tourism – the dance and performing arts school industry has fallen through the cracks due to our classification and needs urgent funding support like these other industries have received.
Make yourself heard
We need public support for this petition! Anyone who has ever been part of a dance and performing arts school, or has a child or friend that attends – please sign and share!
We appreciate many businesses are doing in tough, but if you do not act now, your local dance and performing arts studio may not be there when you are able to return!