Class War in the Classroom

Last week the Institute for Fiscal Studies concluded – what we all knew already – that the poor will be hardest hit by government cuts.

That the poor pay more (in relation to earnings) and receive less is obvious for all to see (it also highlights the true nature of government – to privatise profits and socialise loss). Less obvious are the mechanisms which ensure that all but a few of those born in poverty will remain poor  (and that the rich will get ever richer) – for, as we’ve said many times before, a child’s social class background at birth is still the best indicator of how well he or she will do in school and later on in life.

This process begins at birth (with factors like birth-weight, general health, etc., already being subject to the socioeconomic conditions of the parent), but the most devastating effects of class division can be found in the classroom.

Even the Tories admit that there is a huge learning gap between the rich and the poor. Schools minister Nick Gibb says too few children reach the level expected and those in poorer areas are doing worse than others. Commenting on recently released data – which shows about one in six (84,000) children are not reaching the expected levels in writing, speaking-and-listening, maths and science, and that nearly one in five seven-year-olds (104,700) pupils, do not write well enough, while one in ten do not make the grade in maths – Mr Gibb said:

“In spite of the hard work of teachers and pupils, today’s results show that there are still too many seven-year-olds not reaching the expected level in these important subjects. We need to make sure that government gives schools the support they need to get the basics right. … These results also show an unacceptable attainment gap between local authorities where we know there are a high proportion of children on free school meals, and richer areas.”

The government openly admits the problem and yet it hasn’t stopped them cutting millions in schools spending. Worse still the bastards have cut spending which would have allowed Doncaster council to rebuild Campsmount School which was gutted by fire last year. Campsmount has an 80% intake of students from impoverished backgrounds, so you’d think Mr Gibb would make it a priority if he truly cared about  education and poverty.

Added to this is the fact that early two-thirds of UK parents cannot afford after-school activities for their children. A poll conducted by Save the Children suggests that even basic activities, such as catch-up clubs for those falling behind, can be costly for parents. Head of UK policy for the charity, Sally Copley, said:

“Children who do after-school activities have more confidence, see the world in different ways, have a stronger sense of identity – and this ultimately translates into doing better in exams and getting a better job. … We’re particularly concerned poorer children are missing out as a result.”

The Joseph Rowntree Trust believe that just £5 billion would eradicate childhood poverty in the UK – which, in turn, would boost the economy for future generations. The bankers were given ten times this amount – £500 billion – to bail them out from their own mess. The government now says that we must suffer major cuts in public spending to make up a deficit of £180 billion – these cuts will have a catastrophic effect on poorer children ensuring that they sink ever deeper into the poverty trap.

The government spends £500 billion on bankers, but consistently fails to cough £5 billion for the benefit of the nation and then has the balls to say that we’re £180 billion short!!! Seems like it’s not only poor kids who are struggling with their maths!

If we really want to save the children then we’re gonna have to cut back on GOVERNMENT, not public spending.

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