The first of my key missions in North West Hampshire is to make sure that every child goes to a great school. I have visited loads of them since 2015 to see for myself how they’re doing. Happily many are thriving, but some are not and I held an education summit in Andover to talk about what more could be done to help. In particular I lobbied strongly against the proposed funding formula that would have hit village schools in particular. I am therefore very pleased that the views I and other MP’s made clear have been reflected in our manifesto. There are two key points that matter to NW Hants:
First there will be a new funding formula, but with a guarantee that no school will lose cash, and an extra £4 billion pumped in over the next few years, meaning real terms rises. Also pupil premium – money aimed at the most disadvantaged, will continue and be protected.
Second there will be renewed concentration on the basics of learning to read and write, great use of phonics screening and an expectation all children will know their times tables. In particular though we want to reduce “teaching to the test” and will encourage a really wide and fertile knowledge base with museums and institutions funded to develop their participation in education. There will also be increased support to teachers to attract and retain the brightest and the best.
All of these measures will help bring all our schools up to the standard of the best, and I will be in the lead in making it happen in NW Hants if I win on June 8th.