Tag Archives: graham allen

The Independent View: Slashing early years spending contradicts the desire to improve social mobility

In its Social Mobility strategy launched last April, the government made clear the dual priorities shaping its agenda:

“Tackling the financial deficit is the Coalition’s most immediate task. But tackling the opportunity deficit – creating an open, socially mobile society – is our guiding purpose.”

These are strong words indeed, marking an unequivocal commitment to improving the life chances of children from disadvantaged backgrounds. At a very minimum, they indicate a clear intention to manage the necessary public spending cuts in a way that recognises this laudable goal.

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged , , , , and | 4 Comments

Opinion: Early years intervention is a smart move

It’s unusual for my morning radio alarm to bring me to wakefulness quite so abruptly as it did today with the coverage of MP Graham Allen’s report on giving disadvantaged children the best start in life. Something so important being given leading coverage is good news.

Although it probably isn’t news to most working the sector, nor many Liberal Democrats I suspect, it is very welcome that high-profile, cross party attention is now being given to idea that early intervention to improve social and emotional development will yield great dividends for
the child and society later in its life.

The report …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 15 Comments

Fixed-term Parliaments: better by standing orders?

Last week Malcolm Jack, the Clerk of the House of Commons, got a little flurry of media coverage for his evidence before a Parliamentary committee considering the proposed legislation for fixed-term Parliaments. “Parts of the government’s plans to bring in fixed-term parliaments are vulnerable to legal challenge” was how the BBC reported it.

It is understandable why that got the headlines, but lurking in the detail are important questions about how Parliament operates and whether its administration is competent. Jack’s evidence, and concerns about the legislation, really fall into three parts.

First, as might be expected from an official whose …

Posted in Op-eds and Parliament | Also tagged , , and | 11 Comments
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  • User AvatarMartin 22nd Feb - 10:24pm
    "Move on"??? (a very different Martin says) Suffer the appalling consequences more like. You do not understand, just because you have decided to jump, does...
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    Well done Dr Ali and Team. Sorry couldn't be with you this week; enjoyed my earlier visits. Great team - hope you get the result...
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    We are leaving the EU, stop the navel gazing; get over it; and move on.
  • User AvatarPeter Kemp 22nd Feb - 10:14pm
    And .... do not forget Copeland .... 11 Lib Dem MPs on Friday ??
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    You've done a great job Ed. Thanks to you, Zulfi, his family, friends and the Local Party. It's essential we take the Lib Dem Fightback...
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    Best of luck. Pay day tomorrow I really need to make a donation, my small way of thanking you for the effort you have all...