Struggling Secondary Schools Run By Labour: According to Ofsted, the majority of the secondary schools in the North and Midlands which are failing are located in Labour-run local authorities.
According to the figures, there are 16 local authorities in England where less than three fifths (60%) of children attend a good or outstanding secondary school, achieve five GCSEs at Grade A* to C, and make less than the national levels of expected progress. Among these 16 areas, 13 are run by Labour – and they include Stoke-on-Trent, which is dominated by Labour MPs including the former Shadow Education Secretary, Tristram hunt.
Bradford, also under control of a Labour Council, was cited as a city which ‘stood out’ as being one where ‘standards have been far too low’, according to Sir Michael Wilshaw, the Chief Inspector of Schools.
Sir Michael went on to suggest that if the Northern Powerhouse was to be successful, cities such as Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Sheffield must look to the towns on their borders and word with them to raise attainment and close the skills gap. As the economies of cities in the North and Midlands grow, they will require skilled workforces, and graduate level staff, to work in growing businesses. He also suggested that he would be writing to the Chancellor to remind him, George Osbourne, of the importance of education in a growing economy.
More than 400,000 pupils in the North and the Midlands attend a school which is ‘less than good’, with the Ofsted Chief Inspector saying this could not be explained away by higher levels of deprivation. Speaking earlier this year, Sir Michael described the mediocrity in secondary performance as a ‘national concern’, pointing out that that mediocrity resided mainly – although not exclusively – in the North and Midlands.
The same kind of North/South divide was also pointed out by IPPR, in a recent study also covered on the VoicED website. IPPR found that the poorest students were affected disproportionately in the North as compared to the South of England.
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