Financial issues at home impact children’s education, survey finds

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13th April 2015 14:05 - Education

A recent survey, conducted by the NASUWT teaching union, has found that teachers are noticing children coming into school ill, as their Financial issues at home impact children’s education, survey findsparents cannot take time off work to care for them, due to financial pressures.

Of the 2,452 teachers surveyed, 69 per cent also reported seeing children at school who were hungry.

The report said that children are being “blighted and degraded by poverty and homelessness”.

Some teachers claimed to be aware of children living in Victorian conditions, with young people attending school without socks, a coat and their family depending on food banks.

The findings also showed that 80 per cent had seen children arrive at school in clothes inappropriate for the weather. A similar proportion had seen children come to school in unwashed or damaged clothes.

As well as this, 78 per cent had seen children in school without appropriate footwear and 55 per cent said that they were aware that some children’s families were unable to fund new uniform.

One of the respondents said: “Pupils who come into school unwell. Often their parents cannot afford to take a day off work, and therefore send their children to school when they ought to be at home.”

Approximately, one third of the respondents said that they had seen children leave or start midway through a term, as a result of their families being forced to leave their home. The same amount of people said that they had taught children living in temporary accommodation.

22 per cent of the teachers questioned, said that they knew of young people leaving home due to money problems.

A large proportion of respondents said that financial issues at home affected children’s experiences in the classroom. Children from deprived backgrounds were said to be unable to concentrate well in lessons, and are less likely to be on time, or attend lessons. Children from these troubled backgrounds also lack confidence and display behavioural problems.

Of the teachers, 19 per cent said that they had either given or lent money to pupils, 24 per cent had given food and 62 per cent had given or lent out equipment.

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