Search

‘Keep schools open in summer holidays’ MPs urged by Futureversity youth charity

PUBLISHED: 07:00 03 March 2017

MP Rushanara Ali, founder and Patron of Futureversirty youth education charity [picture: Carmen Valino]

MP Rushanara Ali, founder and Patron of Futureversirty youth education charity [picture: Carmen Valino]

Carmen Valino/Futureversity

Policy makers must do more to help children in deprived areas whose education suffers during the 170 days a year when the school gates are closed.

This is the call to MPs in the Futureversity youth charity’s Summer Vacation report launched in the House of Commons by Bethnal Green and Bow MP Rushanara Ali.

“This report shows the importance of providing opportunities during the school holidays,” she told fellow MPs at the launch. “Helping to raise their aspirations can tackle disadvantage and promote social mobility.”

Rushanara founded the youth charity in Spitalfields, in the heart of her constituency in London’s deprived East End where many children from deprived families regress during the long “empty summer holidays” due to poverty.

Families worrying about money, where the next meal is coming from or facing sheer social isolation have a bad effect on youngsters in the summer months, the Futureversity charity has found.

Its chief executive Michele McKendry pledged: “We aim to eliminate the childhood of empty summers.

“Schools should keep the doors open and provide structured fun learning which ultimately leads to better GCSE grades and daring to believe they can achieve more.”

The organisation had 300 teenagers referred to them from 10 state schools last year alone, in Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Islington, Waltham Forest and Lambeth.

Half the youths joined the Vacation Education programme for 13-to-16 year-olds, whom were mainly from difficult homes and had behaviour and motivation problems.

They attend two days a week over the summer, when 3,000 breakfasts and lunches were provided, with 20 volunteer ‘peer motivators’ and 220 business volunteers gave them an insight into different working environments.

This made it easier to settle back into school when the new term began in September, taking more responsibility for themselves and being more motivated.

The negative effects of “empty summers” have a lasting impact on learning, the charity warns.

Teenagers go ‘backwards’ during the long holidays if they have little stimulus, when parents can’t afford activities to help broaden their horizons.

Futureversity’s summer programme offered business, art and fashion, sport, digital media and photography and performing arts.

Most youngsters in the programme said they would have spent the summer ‘lying in bed’ if they had not been taking part.

Latest East London News Stories

Yesterday, 16:58

A Bangla music festival has released details of its lineup.

Yesterday, 16:51

A man has been rushed to hospital after being rescued from a dock on the Isle of Dogs.

Yesterday, 15:05

Victoria Park has been voted one of the top 10 parks in the UK.

Yesterday, 11:30

A ‘dangerous’ drug dealer who kept a loaded gun on top of a wardrobe has been jailed for eight years.

Yesterday, 07:00

The mayor of Tower Hamlets recognised people who’ve been trained to tackle discrimination.

Mon, 17:14

It might have a twitter account dedicated to parodying its daily delays, but c2c has been named the best train operator in the country at a prestigious rail industry awards night.

Mon, 15:55

Four-time Olympic champion Sir Mo Farah took to the track with Isle of Dogs pupils as part of the Daily Mile initiative.

Mon, 14:48

A Dagenham man who stalked a woman he met on a website for Catholic singles after going on four dates with her has been given a suspended jail sentence.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Are you a landlord looking for a fixed rental income, paid whether the property is empty or not? Steve Westley, general manager at estate agents Elliot Leigh, explains their Guaranteed Rent Scheme and how it takes the stress out of letting your property.

Newsletter Sign Up

East London Advertiser twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now