Charlotte has lent her support to the Council Home Care workers in their bid to keep Bristol Home Care council-run.
Charlotte Leslie has lent her support to the Council Home Care workers in their bid to prevent further privatisation of Home Care Services. Charlotte was one of the 9,000 Bristol residents to sign their petition, and was honoured to address the Home Care workers’ celebration of Care at Bristol Cathedral on 11th May.
Charlotte said “As someone with personal experience of caring for an elderly and disabled friend, I know how important it is for the elderly and infirm to have a familiar face to come in and look after them. Carers work so hard, and often their work is invisible to everyone except those they care for. I was honoured to be able to pay tribute to their work at Bristol Cathedral.”
The following is the introduction to the report entitled Invisible Children written by Charlotte Leslie, Chris Skidmore and Nick Cuff and published by the Bow Group. You can download Invisible Children and to read it in full.
It is ten years since Tony Blair made education his priority in government. An entire generation of pupils have passed through school under Labour’s watch. Pupils who were in the first year of primary school in May 1997 finished their GCSEs last summer. Has every child mattered? In the first of the Bow Group’s ‘Invisible Nation’ series, this report looks at how the Blair generation fared.
We look at more closely at the standard 5A*-C measure of achievement, and look at how much those qualifications will be worth to pupils.
Then we look at those who don’t get those crucial five good GCSEs. And we look at those who don’t get 5 GCSEs of any grade at all.
But that is not the whole story.
This report shines a light on the invisible children. Children who didn’t even get a chance to fail their GCSEs because they never even got to take the exam. Then this report asks what we can do about it. Factors behind social disengagement are complex but we conclude that central tracking of pupils, individualised learning and a real skills agenda are key to improving the situation we find here.
This report reveals what became of the 656,000 pupils who were 7 in 1997 and who took their GCSEs in 2006 *:
The invisible Children:
- 7,000 pupils are missing from education in their final year
- 30,000 pupils were either missing or not entered for GCSEs
- Nearly 60,000 pupils did not obtain any GCSEs, either through not turning up to their GCSE exams, not passing any exams, not being entered for GCSE exams, or disappearing off the school roll.
- 20,000 pupils who sat GCSEs did not sit maths GCSE, 26,000 did not sit English GCSE and 45,000 did not sit science GCSE
- Last year, 29,800 pupils who sat GCSEs did not gain any qualifications – a rise of 6,600 pupils from 2005.
- Over a quarter (27%) of boys do not gain a single GCSE above a C grade – along with a total of 130,000 pupils
The Divide of Deprivation:
- In 695 wards across the country – mostly in inner-city areas of deprivation – the percentage of pupils gaining five GCSEs of any grade has actually fallen backwards
- Pupils taking Free School Meals and pupils with Special Educational Needs are most likely to be the victims of disengagement and educational failure: 41% of persistent truants have SEN, as do 64% of excluded pupils.
- The educational attainment gap between rich and poor is widening, particularly in urban towns
* This study solely covers GCSE entries. Reflecting the fact that the core qualifications must be obtained through this award.
“The Invisible Nation” magazine shines a spotlight on all the people who have fallen off the back of the statistics, and fallen below our social and political radar, the people we’ve forgotten we’ve forgotten.
Charlotte recently launched the Bow Group magazine on the ‘Invisible Nation’. Charlotte said
“There are many members of The Invisible Nation, and by their nature, it is easy to forget they exist. But if we are to be Compassionate Conservatives, these are the very people we should help back into society. This magazine shines a light on the kids who never even get to take their GCSEs, office cleaners who keep The City up and running but who struggle on pitiful wages, the mentally ill who find it hard to even face the world, let alone get to the job centre, and many more.
My dad is Australian and served as a doctor out in Vietnam. I will never forget him telling me that in assessing which war blasted victim to treat first, you had to leave the ones who were screaming. ‘It’s the ones who have stopped screaming who are really in trouble’ he said.
There are members of our society who have simply stopped screaming. Compassion means hearing the silence, then going out to help.”