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Education in the Media: Tuesday 12 June 2018

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Today's Education in the Media blog looks at the funding we provide to support children’s education and services, as well as a new report about the impact that attending a boarding school can have on looked after children.

Children's Commissioner report

Today, Tuesday 12 June, Children’s Commissioner Anne Longfield has published a report about spending on children’s services and education, including post 16 year olds. This follows research by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS).

This has been reported by the Today Programme, Guardian, the Mirror, Independent, Mail, Sun, Times and BBC Online.

We have made more than £200 billion, up to 2020, available to support councils with local services and this includes children’s social care. We also committed £20 million to provide additional support to local authorities where the risk failure is highest.

As part of the research, the IFS has looked at school funding. They have confirmed that per pupil spending in schools in 2020 is set to be at least 70 per cent higher in real terms than it was in 1990.

We are also planning to invest around £7 billion in education and training places for 16 to 19 year olds in 2017-18. As well as investing an extra half a billion pounds a year in England’s technical education system once the new T Levels are being taught.

A Government spokesperson said:

We want every child to get the best start in life and be given the care and support they need to achieve their potential and make the most of their lives. This report recognises the Government is maintaining the amount spent on children’s services, spending a record amount on education and making more than £200 billion available to councils up to 2020 for local services including those for children and young people.

We are reviewing school exclusions to make sure they are only used as a last resort and this Government has launched a new Serious Violence Strategy which puts a stronger focus on steering young people away from violence through early intervention.

A further £200 million programme is supporting councils to develop innovative ways to improve the lives of vulnerable children and families.

Boarding Schools Report

Today, Tuesday 12 June, the Boarding Schools Partnership has published a research report about the impact that attending a boarding school can have on looked after children.

The research shows that if looked after children attend boarding schools it can have a positive impact on their education. Lord Agnew is supportive of this and hopes that this will encourage local authorities to consider this as an option.

The Boarding Schools Partnership is a collaboration of education charities and boarding schools, set up last year by Lord Nash and funded primarily by the Department for Education. This has been reported by the Telegraph.

Lord Agnew, the Parliamentary under Secretary of State for the Schools System, said:

We very much welcome the findings from this report.

It is right that all children should be given the opportunity to reach their full potential and this important piece of work demonstrates that - for the right person, at the right school, at the right time – boarding school can be highly effective in improving both social and educational outcomes. I urge local authorities to consider these findings and the positive impact boarding school placements can have on vulnerable children.

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