Education: North of England

Department for Education written question – answered on 11th June 2018.

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Photo of Alex Sobel Alex Sobel Labour/Co-operative, Leeds North West

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to tackle the attainment gap between students from the North and South of England.

Photo of Nadhim Zahawi Nadhim Zahawi The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

Holding answer received on 21 May 2018

The department is working to improve education standards right across the country. 1.9 million more children are in good or outstanding schools than in 2010, record numbers of young people are in education or training and more disadvantaged pupils are going to university. Furthermore, the attainment gap between 16-year-olds who are disadvantaged and those who are not has closed by 10% since 2011.

There is more to do, which is why the government’s Northern Powerhouse Strategy is investing over £70 million in education outcomes in the north. This includes £12 million as part of a commitment to establish a national network of English Hubs with a specific focus on improving early language and literacy, expanding the reach of the Maths Hubs network to spread excellence in maths teaching and a £5 million scheme trialling projects to provide practical tools and advice to help parents improve children’s vocabulary.

Furthermore, through the £72 million Opportunity Areas programme, the department is targeting local and national resource in five areas in the north - Blackpool, Bradford, Doncaster, North Yorkshire Coast and Oldham - facing social mobility challenges to drive improved outcomes for children and young people.

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