Monday 21 June 2021 / 9:31 AM Education / Kate Green

Ministers failing to live-up to promise of a “tutoring revolution” as less than half of pupils on free school meals will get support

Labour has today [Monday] accused the Government of already failing to live-up to their promise of a “tutoring revolution” as new figures reveal their tutoring programme will reach less than half of pupils on free school meals next year.

The Conservatives’ flagship National Tutoring Programme is projected to reach just 43% of pupils on free school meals – or 8% of all school pupils – next year undermining promises from the Education Secretary that a “tutoring revolution” would enable pupils to catch-up from the impacts of the pandemic.

Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary, Kate Green MP, has described the plans as a “pitiful” response for children who have missed an average of 115 days of in-person school.

Labour has expressed concern about the repeated failures of the government’s tutoring plans which include

  • The current tutoring programme reaching just 1 in 100 school pupils, while the promised expansion would see children receiving less than an hour of tutoring a fortnight across the next school year.
  • Randstad, a multinational human resources company, will deliver the programme next year but with a contract worth £37 million less than the Government originally proposed, prompting fears Ministers are compromising on quality to cut costs.

In questions to the Education Secretary today, Kate Green will challenge the Government on their continued failure to invest in children’s futures, contrasting to Labour’s Children’s Recovery Plan which would deliver new opportunities for all young people to play, learn and develop

Built on the understanding that children learn best when they’re happy and well supported, Labour’s plan would provide new activities and clubs around the school day and specialist mental health support alongside delivering tutoring and targeted learning support for all children who need it.

Kate Green MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary, said:

“We have seen failure, upon failure from this Conservative Government which has treated children as an afterthought and is now failing to invest in their futures.

“Not only is there nothing in their proposals to support children’s wellbeing or social development but the academic element is woefully insufficient, failing to live-up to the promised tutoring revolution.

“Labour has listened to parents, teachers and children and set out a recovery plan that is ambitious for children futures, with tutoring for all who need it alongside investment in activities and clubs creating new opportunities for every child.”