Politics

The Schools Week Labour education policy tracker

As an election gets closer, we keep track of every policy announced by the opposition

As an election gets closer, we keep track of every policy announced by the opposition

As a general election draws closer, Labour is expanding or fleshing out its education policy development.

The party has already announced a series of proposals it would enact if it forms the next government.

This list of policies will be updated as new policies are published, to keep schools in the know about what a Labour government would mean for them.

Here is what the party is proposing (*this piece was last updated in May, 2024).

  1. End tax breaks for private schools to raise £1.7 billion in tax revenues (this was Labour’s original prediction but the IFS has said it could raise over £1.3bn)
  2. ‘National Excellence Programme’ for school improvement focused on pupils who leave without level 3 qualifications
  3. £347 million teacher recruitment fund to fill ‘over 6,500 vacancies and skills gaps’, including by improving career pathways and addressing workload issues
  4. £210 million to give teachers a ‘right’ to continuing professional development and time out to do it
  5. £47 million ‘excellence in leadership’ programme for new heads
  6. Reform of Ofsted to include a school improvement role, focusing on struggling schools
  7. A consultation on scrapping Ofsted’s grading system and replacing it with a ‘report card’ for schools showing what they do well and how they can improve
  8. Introduction of annual safeguarding checks of schools by Ofsted, which would also review things like absences
  9. Ofsted to inspect multi-academy trusts
  10. ’10 by 10’ pledge of opportunities like learning a musical instrument or visiting the seaside by the age of 10, with funding to provide these during an extended school day
  11. Free breakfast clubs for all primary pupils
  12. Citizenship curriculum reform to include ‘practical life skills’
  13. Two weeks of compulsory work experience for pupils and guaranteed careers advice
  14. ‘Mandatory’ digital skills across the curriculum, becoming a ‘fourth pillar’ alongside reading, writing and maths
  15. Changes to academy rules to make all schools follow the national curriculum
  16. Powers for councils over admissions to all schools including academies
  17. Access to in-school counselling staff for all pupils
  18. Reinstate the requirement for all teachers to have or be working towards qualified teacher status, which was scrapped for academies by Michael Gove in 2012
  19. £2,400 retention payments for teachers who complete the two-year early career framework, costing around £50 million, to come from the private schools policy
  20. Simplification of the ‘complex current network of teacher retention incentive payment funds into one single framework’
  21. ‘Update’ Progress 8 and Attainment 8 to hold schools to account for performance in at least one creative or vocational subject
  22. A “full, expert-led review of curriculum and assessment” – more details here
  23. Labour’s curriculum review will also ‘explore how to weave oracy into lessons throughout school’
  24. Pilot of the ‘expansion of a children’s number like the NHS number that stays with children not just for their school career but for their whole childhoods’. This would also allow AI to be used to monitor trends in absences
  25. New regional improvement teams to ‘end the scandal of ‘stuck’ schools’
  26. A plan to create the ‘maths equivalent to phonics’ by training primary non-specialists to better teach the subject
  27. ‘Supervised toothbrushing’ for reception pupils during breakfast clubs

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