Following the announcement of catch-up funding for pupils, Imran Hussain MP has urged the Government to reverse years of school funding cuts so children in Bradford can catch up not just with their lost education, but with pupils across the country.

The Secretary of State for Education has today set out £1.4 billion of investment to provide a national tutoring programme to help allow pupils who have fallen behind at school during the Coronavirus pandemic to catch-up with their education. However, this funding amounts to just 10% of the £15 billion figure recommended by the Government’s own Education Recovery Commissioner, Sir Kevan Collins.

In his letter to the Secretary of State for Education, Imran stated that the figure does not match the scale of the challenge that pupils face, and does nothing to overcome a widening educational divide that sees pupils in Bradford underperform compared to the regional and national average. He has therefore urged the Government to reverse the underfunding of Bradford’s schools and ensure that pupils in Bradford can catch-up with the national average.

Speaking on the Government’s education catch-up funding, Imran said:

“Like many children across the country, children in Bradford have seen their education hit hard by the pandemic and many have sadly fallen behind as a result, which must be addressed as a matter of urgency. Yet the paltry funding announced by the Education Secretary today fails to meet the scale of the challenge schools face and is just a fraction of that which was initially proposed by the Government’s own advisor.

“Children in Bradford catching up on their education also face the additional impact of deprivation and disadvantage, as well as chronic underfunding of Bradford’s schools which means they already underperform their peers in exams both across the region and across the country, which just further shows that today’s announcement won’t go far enough.

“Instead of just trying to apply a sticking plaster to the problem of education, Ministers need to make a real commitment and ensure that children in Bradford don’t just catch-up with their education, but catch up with the results of other children across the country, and they can start by ensuring that our schools and teachers get the funding they need.”

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