NFER research released this month reveals that learning loss among BAME and disadvantaged young people during school closures was significantly higher than among their wealthier peers. Lorraine Langham, Future First’s CEO, responds:
“The NFER research shines a vital light on the widening gap at the heart of our education system.
While the government grapples with the thorny issue of delaying next year’s school exams it is worth remembering that extra time alone will not see us narrowing the gap between pupils from privileged backgrounds and those facing more disadvantaged circumstances.
If ministers decide to push back the date of next year’s GCSEs and A-levels it is essential that all pupils, especially the most disadvantaged, are inspired and motivated to make a success of their lives. That is why Future First has recently launched a crowdfunding appeal aimed at setting up an alumni programme in every state school and college in the country.
Private schools consistently harness the power of alumni networks to give their pupils even more belief and opportunity to succeed, while the vast majority of state school pupils miss out – despite the many inspiring role models that could be available.
Time – they say – is a healer, but in this case it will not be nearly enough to adequately to address the gaping inequalities that already exist within our education system and have been exacerbated by the current crisis.”