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School Attendance

Volume 677: debated on Monday 22 June 2020

What proportion of children (a) classed as vulnerable and (b) eligible for free school meals are attending school. (903529)

About 18% of children with an education, health and care plan or a social worker attended an education setting on 11 June. The Department does not collect separate attendance data for those eligible for free school meals.

Is the Minister not ashamed that after 10 years of a Tory Government, in West Yorkshire alone there are almost exactly 100,000 children at risk living in families of multiple vulnerabilities? Many of them are still not at school and therefore at risk. What will she do about it?

I am enormously proud that after 10 years of a Conservative-led Government the attainment gap between those from disadvantaged backgrounds and those from more advantaged backgrounds has narrowed at every stage of children’s education. We have kept schools open for vulnerable children, and those children most at risk have been seen or contacted by their social workers. I thank social workers and schools across the country for doing that. We need to get children back to school, and the Opposition should support us.