Nottingham North’s children behind before they’ve been to school

Posted on 17 February 2017 (Permalink)

“The latest figures show us that young children in Nottingham North are falling behind, sometimes before they’ve even started school.” said Graham Allen, MP for Nottingham North, following the release of Save the Children’s latest polling.

He continued: “There are over 7500 children in the constituency, and by age 5 more than 1 in 5 of these aren’t at the expected level of speech and language skills. And this increases to 1 in 4 when you only look at the kids on free school meals.

“Being at such a disadvantage before they’re even in school limits the life chances of these kids from the very start. If the Government really cares about the opportunities available for these children, and wants to build a country that works for everyone, not just the privileged, they need to focus on the deprived areas which need it most, like our patch. Nottingham North is one of the most deprived constituencies in the country, and the most deprived for skills, education and training, so it’s our youngsters who are being left behind while others get ahead.

Save the Children are calling on the Government to invest £65 million into the 20% most deprived areas of the country to support nurseries so they can afford to hire and keep Early Years Teachers. The figures tell us that 10% of the children who do attend nursery in my constituency don’t have access to a qualified Early Years teacher, explaining why they’re falling behind already. I hope the Government listens and spends this money to help our kids from missing out before they’ve begun!

It is absolutely vital that we invest into early years’ development of our children. We have to move from the strategy of firefighting to ensuring that we do our best to prevent such issues all together by attacking them early. That way we will not only improves people’s lives, but also save taxpayers’ money in the long run.”