It is widely agreed that the coalition government has done huge damage to this country’s educational provision. But too often we see the lazy view presented that “they’re all the same” and that nothing new is being offered. SEA believes that there is a real and important difference between the parties and this briefing is designed to provide some key data that illustrates that.
It concentrates on the mainstream school system – there is of course much more that could be said about early years, inclusion and further and higher education. It contains examples of statements illustrating where the government is going wrong, what informed educational experts think should be our priorities and some key examples of Labour’s important and positive commitments.
It’s deliberately presented in the form of short statements, quotations and statistics so that it can be used in local campaigning – for example questions to candidates, letters to newspapers and local leaflets.
SEA agrees that the fundamental aim of all education policy is to raise standards and in particular to reduce the gap between disadvantaged and advantaged young people. We agree about the critical importance of recruiting and developing teachers of the highest quality. We want to see teachers allowed to use their professionalism and not be micro-managed by ministers.
But we argue that standards and structures can’t be separated. Things like admissions, funding systems, place planning, how schools are monitored and how local communities are engaged with schools all make a difference to how well young people achieve.
With partner organisations we have also prepared a leaflet setting out our key priorities and showing how all these issues impact on standards. That leaflet is attached to this briefing and we hope it will help to provide readers with arguments to support calls for change under a new government.
Just click on the links to get to the two documents. Then please do circulate as widely as you can.