MP ‘appalled’ at school inequality

MP ‘appalled’ at school inequality

DEWSBURY MP Paula Sherriff has slammed the government over new evidence of a growth in inequality among schoolchildren in her constituency. 

A report from the Education Policy Institute revealed that disadvantaged pupils in Dewsbury are over 15 months behind their better-off peers by the end of secondary school.  

The report suggests that poorer pupils are no longer closing the ‘attainment gap’ between their GCSE grades and those of their peers. 

Disadvantaged pupils in Dewsbury and Mirfield are four months behind their peers from their early years – a gap that continues to widen on their education journey.

The ‘attainment gap’ increases to 11.6 months of learning at primary level, and 15.5 months by the end of secondary school. 

Ms Sheriff said: “It is shameful that a generation of young people in Dewsbury, Mirfield, Denby Dale and Kirkburton are feeling the consequences of years of Tory austerity and savage cuts to education budgets, from Sure Start to further education. 

“This is an appalling waste of potential and yet again, it’s in contrast to progress being made in London and the South East, where in Westminster, for example, poorer pupils are only 3.9 months behind their peers. 

“It is not enough for the new Prime Minister Boris Johnson to talk about ‘closing the opportunity gap,’ when he’s the embodiment of successive Tory governments who have shown privilege begets privilege.”

“We need a credible, properly resourced plan to tackle social injustice.”

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