Closing the Regional Attainment Gap

Recently the All Party Parliamentary Group on Social Mobility launched its latest report on closing the regional attainment gap. Currently, pupils from disadvantaged areas are lagging behind their classmates by around half a grade per subject at GCSE, affecting their social mobility for the rest of their lives. And this gap varies hugely across the country. While London is pulling ahead in raising attainment, other areas, such as Somerset and Blackpool are being left behind. Our year-long Inquiry examined the problems causing the gap and our report proposes the solutions needed to close it.

You can read more about the report in my recent article with Justin Madders MP discussing how good teaching has the power to kickstart social mobility. Ruby Nightingale from the Sutton Trust has also written a blog which provides a great summary of our findings.

“While London is pulling ahead in raising attainment, other areas, such as Somerset and Blackpool are being left behind. If we want to build a fairer society where everyone is socially mobile, we must do a lot more to close this regional attainment gap.”

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Financial Inclusion at Nationwide

Given my work on the Lords Financial Exclusion Select Committee, I was very pleased to visit Nationwide’s Victoria Street Branch and hear about the work they are doing to protect vulnerable consumers and promote financial inclusion.

You can read the full report by the select committee on financial exclusion here and the easy-read version of the report here.