The status quo in Birmingham and Leicester

Leicester West MP Liz Kendall writes:

liz kendall mp leicester“While there’s been real progress over the past decade, a third of children in Leicester are still growing up in poverty. It’s hard to do well at school if your parents can’t afford to buy decent food, let alone books, or if you struggle to do your homework because you live in a cold or overcrowded home . . .

We must open children’s eyes to opportunities that lie ahead

“What we end up doing as adults can often be traced back to the influences we experienced when we were young. The early years of life are particularly important in shaping later life chances.

“While there’s been real progress over the past decade, a third of children in Leicester are still growing up in poverty. It’s hard to do well at school if your parents can’t afford to buy decent food, let alone books, or if you struggle to do your homework because you live in a cold or overcrowded home”.

parks primary entranceLiz Kendall recently went to Parks Primary School, in New Parks, to see the work they do as part of their “Aspirations Week”. There was a range of activities for children of all ages including a vets’ clinic for the youngest pupils, which used toy animals to teach them about a vet’s work.

Older pupils had “what’s my job?” sessions, where they met professionals including a police officer, a palaeontologist and a woman engineer who explained that the things they enjoy doing can end up becoming their job – given hard work and determination.

Students from all year groups went to New College Learning and Sports Village and took part in trampolining, freestyle gymnastics, boxing, basketball, design and technology, art, music, humanities, French, English, science, hairdressing, maths and ICT.

The teachers also took pupils to Loughborough University. Meeting students from ordinary backgrounds and joining in with exciting experiments in science labs showed the children what was on offer.

The teachers at Parks Primary say that their Aspiration Week activities inspire and motivate children and this has led to higher attainment in the core subjects of English, maths and science – and ‘across the board’.

liam byrneLiz Kendall could inspire Liam Byrne to press for such action in Hodge Hill which is still reported to have the highest level of youth unemployment and the second highest overall unemployment in the country.

 

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