Homeless children on the increase in Scotland, new figures show

Teachers warn that children need secure home lives to learn effectively, and say 'schools alone cannot overcome the damaging impact of poverty'

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The number of homeless children in Scotland is growing, new figures reveal.

There were 6,581 children in temporary accommodation on 30 September 2017, a 10 per cent increase – or a rise of 594 – compared with a year previously.

Andrea Bradley, assistant secretary at the EIS, Scotland’s biggest teaching union, said: “The rise in the number of children living in temporary accommodation is a matter of serious concern, and a clear sign that the politics of austerity are continuing to have a severe impact on young people.

“EIS members cited in a recent survey the detrimental effect on children’s and young people’s school experience of living in hostels, bed and breakfast and other temporary accommodation. A settled home life in a safe environment is essential to children’s sense of security and wellbeing, and, in turn, to their educational and life chances.”

She added that “teachers will continue to do all that they can to provide adequate support” but “it is clear that schools alone cannot overcome the damaging impact of poverty on young people”.

Teachers' housing problems

Last month, Tes revealed that a growing number of teachers in the UK were are on the verge of homelessness.

As well as causing hardship for teachers, unaffordable housing was also blamed for fuelling the crisis in teacher recruitment and retention.

The situation had become so serious that senior figures in politics and education were pressing the government to intervene to secure affordable housing for teachers.

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