Kevin Courtney, joint general secretary of the National Education Union, has commented on the Labour Party’s call for the Government to reintroduce the educational maintenance allowance for disadvantaged 16- to 18-year-olds in further education.

“The National Education Union fully supports Labour’s call to reinstate the education maintenance allowance (EMA). It is shocking that so many young people from disadvantaged backgrounds are not finishing their study programmes, but we know that money is a huge barrier to completing post-16 education. Before the Coalition Government scrapped it, the EMA was proven to be a success in giving young people the vital financial support they needed to get the qualifications that then helped them into the job market or further study. If the Government is as serious about social mobility as it claims to be, it will reinstate EMA to ensure that all young people get the best possible start to their adult life.”