Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, has today backed a campaign calling on the Government to rethink its pandemic recovery measures for children and young people.
In two separate letters to the Prime Minister, coordinated by Fair Education Alliance and the National Children’s Bureau, and signed by over 240 leaders from across business, education and the charity sectors, campaigners have again urged the Government to invest in their stated intention of levelling up and show real ambition for the recovery for children and young people.
The letter and the campaign follow the recent resignation of the Government’s education recovery commissioner Sir Kevan Collins after ministers allocated just £1.4 billion in funding for the next phase of their catch up plan.
Sir Kevan Collins had called for around £15 billion to help pupils make up for lost learning during the pandemic. In his resignation letter, Sir Collins wrote that the government’s funding measures fell ‘far short of what is needed’.
The proposed £1.4 billion equates to around £50 per pupil, which pales in comparison to the £1,600 and £2,500 per pupil allocated by the United States and the Netherlands respectively.
Andrew Gwynne said:
This government loves to talk the talk about levelling up, but they have yet to show that they are serious about it. You simply cannot level up the country or ‘build back better’ without funding the futures of babies, children and young people.
I urge the Prime Minister and the Chancellor to rethink these funding proposals. The childhoods and futures of young people have been massively impacted by the pandemic, and repairing them cannot be done on the cheap.
I am therefore proud to be supporting the National Children’s Bureau and the various charities, organisations and business leaders who have called for a proper funding plan for our young people.
Read the full letter here.