£45 million for literacy will not 'reverse damage' of funding cuts, Labour says

Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner has condemned the investment as a 'small initiative'

Adi Bloom

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The government’s new £45 million investment in literacy will do nothing to compensate for the funding cuts that schools have faced, the Labour party has said.

Angela Rayner, the shadow education secretary, called the investment a “small initiative”, saying that it would not reverse the damage caused by the £2.7 billion of funding cuts that schools have faced since 2015.

Ms Rayner told The Independent: “Once again this government believes that these small initiatives are enough to reverse the damage they are doing to our schools.

“This funding will do nothing to change the fact that £2.7 billion has been cut from the budgets of England’s schools since 2015, and that teacher recruitment targets have been missed for the fifth year in a row.

“Until this government gets the basics right, they will never be able to deliver the education that every child deserves.”

'The best literacy teaching'

Yesterday, the government announced that nearly £45 million would be used to boost primary literacy, as part of its new social-mobility action plan. The funding package will include £5 million for trialling approaches to help parents and carers in the North of England support early language development at home

However, it was unclear how much of the money would be new.

Announcing the investment, education secretary Justine Greening said: “Our ambition is that no community will be left behind on education. Today’s literacy investment will help make sure that not just most, but every child arrives at school with the vocabulary levels they need to learn.

“And our investment will mean that once they are at school, every child will get the best literacy teaching.”

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Adi Bloom

Adi Bloom is Tes comment editor

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