Liberal Democrats general election manifesto

Education is in crisis. It is heartening that this manifesto recognises many of the major challenges.


Commenting on the Liberal Democrat election manifesto, Daniel Kebede, General Secretary of the National Education Union, said:

“It is heartening that the first of the manifestos to be published in this election campaign recognises many of the major challenges facing education. After 14 years of neglect the scale of the problem is immense. The issues range from a desperate lack of funding for schools, colleges, early years to crumbling buildings a stifling curriculum, Ofsted and the lack of SEND and mental health and well-being support for our children and young people.  

 ‘The Liberal Democrats rightly highlight the teacher recruitment and retention crisis and the need for fully funded and fair pay increases.  Those pay increases must represent a substantial correction in pay, sufficient to repair the damage to the competitiveness of pay in education caused by pay cuts since 2010. Teacher workload is also through the roof and one of the main reasons alongside pay that teachers leave the profession.

‘Hungry children cannot learn – it is as simple as that. A hot, healthy school dinner helps children concentrate better in class and thrive in school and we urge the Liberal Democrats to revisit their previous commitment to expanding free school meal entitlement to all pupils in primary school, to ensure that no child is left behind.

 ‘The commitment to provide a counsellor in all primary and secondary schools funded by increasing the Digital Services Tax on social media firms and other tech giants is sensible and necessary.

‘It is welcome that the Liberal Democrats have committed to a real-terms increase in school funding, however, the legacy of 14 years of austerity mean that is commitment is nowhere near sufficient to tackle the problems faced by schools.

‘Education is in crisis. For whoever forms the next Government education must be one of their top priorities. Children and young people deserve the world class education system so often promised but never delivered by Rishi Sunak.

‘The NEU will engage with the next Government to ensure that the years of ill thought-out and callous policies that have done so much to diminish our education provision in England are not repeated”.

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