Sunday 16 May 2021 / 10:48 AM Education / Kate Green

New data reveals Government summer schools will reach just 8% of pupils as Labour demands Ministers be ambitious for children’s recovery on National Children’s Day

On National Children’s Day, Labour is calling on the Government to put children at the heart of an ambitious national recovery as new Labour analysis reveals that the Government’s summer schools will reach just 8% of pupils across England.

In February, the Government announced funding for summer schools to support children’s recovery. However, Labour’s analysis reveals fewer than one in 12 pupils will benefit from the schemes.

Among incoming year 7 pupils – who are the main target for summer school provision – the funding would provide just one week of summer teaching and activities, woefully insufficient to help children recover from half a year of missed school.

The pitiful reach of summer school programmes comes on top of previous Labour analysis which revealed the Government’s flagship tutoring programme is delivering support to less than 2% of pupils.

Labour has warned that Tuesday’s Queen’s Speech was a missed opportunity to deliver the ambitious national recovery plan that children need with more time for play and social development alongside targeted catch-up teaching.

Labour’s plan for universal ‘catch-up’ breakfast clubs, would see all children benefit from a healthy meal to start their day, while creating extra time for children to socialise and schools to deliver targeted tuition support. Evidence shows breakfast clubs can boost children’s educational attainment with positive impacts on reading and writing.

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

“These half-baked summer school plans are yet more evidence of the Conservatives’ failure to deliver on their promises on children’s recovery.

“The Government’s plans are falling far short of what we should demand to help every child recover lost learning and social development. The Government must be ambitious for children’s recovery or risk a Covid generation being held back.

“Labour wants children to be at the heart of our national recovery. Our Bright Future taskforce will set out bold recovery policies, starting with catch-up breakfast clubs, which are ambitious for every child’s learning and wellbeing.”