This is primarily a SWOT analysis of the situation of the organisation, the Music Teachers’ Association of Queensland.


  • Commenced in 1921; long standing music association. Incorporated association
  • Setting high standards and best case practice for quality teaching.
  • Website: connecting students and teacher, information about piano and vocal competitions, student recitals, professional development, branches and recommended tuition fees.
  • Long serving staff member, committed volunteer executive, volunteers who regularly support competitions, PD and recitals
  • Provide booklet “Guidelines for Music Teachers” detailing standards expected with Codes of Conduct to members.
  • Provides template of a Risk Management Strategy and Disclosure Guidelines for its members.
  • Professional development provided for members and other teachers, including students. PD attendance has improved over recent years with more appealing PD being provided. Recording of PD and providing videos to state and interstate teachers.
  • Biennially the Music Teachers Alan Lane Memorial workshops are held, by different branches including the Brisbane branch. Alan Lane was a distinguished teacher and academic whose career at the Qld Conservatorium impacted on many Queenslanders. His son, an internationally acclaimed concert artist, Piers Lane, is an MTAQ patron.
  • Recommended minimum tuition rates are referred to by many schools and other organisations including private studio teachers, accompanists, choirs, school teachers, tutors and lecturers.
  • Head office in Brisbane; branches in Cairns, Toowoomba, Townsville; teacher groups in Biloela, Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. Branches are incorporated with their own constitution.
  • Brisbane networks: Northside, Southside and Westside.
  • Recommend quality insurance with H2 Insurance Solutions.
  • Several hundred teaching members, including students.
  • Member journal published three times a year – soft and hard copies.
  • Regular contact with members via email; information communicated includes MTAQ PD, non-MTAQ events, concerts and requests from members for information from others.
  • Patrons: well know pianists, Dr Piers Lane and Max Olding and world renowned singer Lisa Gasteen.
  • We will be implementing a mentoring program for new and student members.


  • Member numbers have dropped over several years but have maintained since around 2012.
  • Perception the MTAQ is a pianist only association.
  • Difficult to encourage other instruments to attend PD.
  • Lack of funds to grow membership: marketing and advertising.
  • Size of state of Queensland – Branches are semi-autonomous – “We pay Brisbane office our affiliation fees and what do we get in return.
  • Difference of opinion between branches as to ways to encourage more members: recruiting methods.
  • Functioning website that is up to date, relevant and mobile friendly.
  • Lack of awareness in the community of importance of using qualified teachers.


  • Attract new and younger members through boosting professionalism of assoicaiton – more professional. Attract new and younger members through boosting ‘professionalism’ of association – more professional development for all types of teaching. Greater numbers of teachers within the Association who are recognized as truly ‘professional’ will bolster the standing of the ‘studio music teacher’.
  • Advertise more widely the aims and benefits of membership of MTAQ to teachers, potential teachers and parents looking for teachers. Address issue of supposed allegiance to particular examination bodies by informing public about healthy sponsorship from examination bodies, such as Trinity College,13 ANZCA14 and ABRSM15 as well as AMEB.
  • Educate members and potential members of the benefits of continuing education, professional development and sharing of ideas in workshops and masterclasses.
  • Engage teachers who are conversant with technology tools to inform members
  • Lobby government for recognition of need to support our MTAQ to increase professionalism of organization that provides the basis and penetration of music education in regional and metropolitan Queensland. With greater fund base, the association can remunerate its volunteer management, access more teachers with professional development and raise the profile of the ‘professional studio music teacher’ who can mentor and encourage the teacher who is less skilled but nevertheless teaching.
  • Plans are afoot to re-define membership of MTAQ to more easily embrace students and Contemporary Membership.
  • MTAs create a national teacher search website with the aim of creating a better search optimisation and provide a national website to compete with other sources of teachers
  • Lobby and to be prepared to meet government with an accreditation plan in place.


  • Parents not being aware of the importance of using qualified teachers and uses the services of teachers at music schools and other private teachers, whose qualifications or teaching ability does not meet adequate standards to teach music properly.
  • Aging membership (more members in the over fifties age group).
  • The ability of virtually anyone, qualified or not, to set up a teaching studio and charge much less (in some cases much more) than the accepted recommended fees – often this (lack of qualifications) is a necessity in regional Australia and a heavy handed approach will disadvantage the disadvantaged but stricter control is inevitable in this age of litigation and legislation.


Committee of the MTAQ with Kerry Thomson
Published Dec 1, 2017

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