Poverty Progression is Poor – Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission.

Tcvc word images 2he Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission says the development gap between rich and poor five-year-olds must halve for a more equal society.

Pre school pupils from poor backgrounds  are still lagging behind by the time they take GCSEs,  with those pupils half as likely to get five good GCSEs as their wealthier peers,  according to the commission. This means that those pupils have less chance of going to good universities.

Commission chairman Alan Milburn, calls for more stretching objectives for the early years and a new national definition of school readiness.

“Current signs of progress do not go nearly far or fast enough to address the gulf between the divided Britain of the present and the One Nation Britain we aspire to become.” states Mr Milburn. The commission also calls for a rethink of teacher pay and the funding of teacher training.

The commission also states  “At the very bottom of society there are more than one million children living a life of persistent poverty.

“They are excluded from sharing in the many opportunities that life in modern Britain affords.”

The government has said however it is waging an ‘all out war against poverty’ citing the new minimum wage , the pupil premium and extra cash pumped into schools,  to help pupils from poor backgrounds.








Colour and Light – out of sight!

Family Learning Festival 2015The 2015 Bradford Family Learning Festival has the theme of Colour and Light.

The festival is taking place across the autumn half term break, and promises loads of activities for families across the Bradford District  The Festival is run with our partners at the National Media Museum,   the National Trust and Forster’s Bistro along with the Impressions Gallery and Bradford Council’s library service.

During the 23rd of October  to the 31st October, Bradford libraries along with Bradford’s museums, will be hosting various colourful events readings and craft activities. East Riddlesden Hall will be encouraging visitors to make coloured lanterns in time for Halloween and at Cliffe Castle, create your very own stained  glass to take home! Get your picture taken in a variety of colourful costumes at the Impressions Gallery in Centenary Square. Come to the science events at Forsters Bistro and check out the Media Museum where creative events will be running, throughout the week! There is something for everybody!

Contact your local Bradford library in the first instance, or click the picture above for more information.

See you there!





Happy Birthday Horton Community Farm!

HCF 2Horton Community Farm, supported by Family Learning, is celebrating its 3rd birthday on Saturday November 14th 2015, by running a drop in volunteer session for families. Come along and join the fun!

There will be activities including playing games, getting creative with natural materials and helping with farm jobs.

Everyone is welcome and no booking is necessary. Activities are aimed at children between the ages of 3 and 11. Horton Community Farm can be found in Great Horton at Cecil Avenue, BD7 3BW.

See you there!

Little Britain – Join a Library!

Education secretary Nicky Morgan is teaming up with Little Britain Childrens booksactor and writer David Walliams to promote library membership. The Department for Education will also support the Reading Agency to work with schools to  get more Year 3 pupils (aged 7-8) enrolled at their local library.

Nicky Morgan says: “No matter where they live or what their background, every single child in this country deserves the opportunity to read, to read widely, and to read well – it’s a simple matter of social justice…That’s why I am pleased to team up with David on this national mission to make our young people the most literate in Europe.”

David Walliams adds:”In a world of the constant distractions of television and computer games, it is more important than ever to encourage youngsters to read.”



Poorer toddlers missing out – OFSTED

Half of  under two year olds who are entitled to free nursery places are not taking  up the offer, according to Sir Michael Wilshaw, Chief Inspector of OFSTED. Those from disadvantaged backgrounds can make huge strides to match the attainment of their wealthier peers, if they were able to attend he states. However, the department for Education disagrees.

Read article hereffd boy tree facejpg

Read a transcript of Sir Michael Wilshaw’s speech here

Poor Pupils Not Benefiting from Premium

Poor pupils are not reaping the benefits of the Pupil Premium in schools, according to the National Audit Office.SH2

Some two million children between  five and 16 qualify for  funding, out of seven million pupils. £2.5bn was given to schools in 2014-15 as pupil-premium funding – money allocated for children from poorer backgrounds. The aim  is to “close the gap” between richer and poorer children, by improving academic performance.

Amyas Morse head of the NAO states: “Early signs are that the Pupil Premium has potential, but it will take time for its full impact to become clear. As it takes the policy forward, the Department will need to review whether spending more in this way would allow it to close the attainment gap more quickly. The high degree of local discretion has benefits and costs. Some schools don’t appropriately focus funding on disadvantaged pupils, and some spend funds on activities which are not demonstrably effective.


Read the NAO summary report here

Read BBC News report here