Government Must Prevent Disadvantaged Pupils Falling Behind Due To COVID-19

By Conor McKenzie, Jun 09, 2020 2:06

Primary schools are now not expected to reopen to all pupils this academic year, leaving the Government with serious questions to answer.

The Government and local authorities need
to do more to enable online learning for children, otherwise we risk seeing our children fall further behind.
Andrew Gray

Liberal Democrats asked when the Government realised that their plan was bound to fail and why concerns from teachers about capacity were derided as scaremongering.

The Government must now explain what plans they have to ensure children don't fall further behind this summer. This needs to include providing disadvantaged pupils with the necessary equipment.

Finally, the Education Secretary should apologise to staff, parents, and children. He has attacked the teaching profession at every turn, while children and families pay the price for his incompetence.

Responding to news that primary schools will not now be expected to reopen to all pupils in the current academic year, local parent and Liberal Democrat campaigner, Andrew Gray, said:

“Educating is not an easy job at the best of times, but teachers have done an amazing job of continuing to educate the children of key workers during this pandemic.

“However — while most private schools have moved their lessons online — many parents relying on state schooling are concerned that their children are falling behind, especially those from less-advantaged families.

“The Government and local authorities need to do more to enable online learning for children, otherwise we risk seeing our children fall further behind.”

Liberal Democrat Education spokesperson Layla Moran MP added: 

"Serious questions have to be answered about when the Government knew their plan was bound to fail and why concerns from teachers about capacity were derided as scaremongering.

"We need to hear the Government’s proposals for what happens now and in the summer to make sure children don't fall behind, including providing laptops and internet access to disadvantaged pupils who need them.

"Children, families and staff are owed an apology from an Education Secretary who is not in control of his brief and has attacked the teaching profession at every turn. He is out of his depth and children and their families are paying the price for his incompetence."

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