The Social Mobility Commission (SMC) recently released a new report examining 20 years of government efforts to tackle social
Education needs better, fairer funding. It needs stability, not change for its own sake and increased uncertainty. It needs recognition of actual problems and innovative thinking in solving them. This can only happen if channels of communication between all those who have a stake in the education community are kept open. Whoever is in office, we must make sure that the education debate continues.
The Conservative Manifesto makes reference to the intake of selective schools, but not to the end result of their re-introduction: a two-tier education system within which different children have access to different opportunities, not the 'Great Meritocracy' claimed. For this election, let's remember what the real problems facing education are and focus on what needs to happen to deliver an education system fit for the 21st century to every child.
How much further can we go before we are forced to admit that continuously saving money could mean we have to rescue education? The conversation must continue, but its focus needs to change. Let's stop talking about cuts and start talking about investment.
It takes a brave government to step in and deal with the burgeoning issue of teacher recruitment and challenges to education funding. I look at this Conservative government and I am not sure they are up to that task.
Why should a skilled engineer come to work for us to teach when we can't pay them anything like what they would earn working in industry? Would you do it?
Inequality is everywhere at the moment. Scarcely a day goes by without a new take on an age-old story. Inevitably, much of this has focused around money - the super rich, multinationals, bonuses, the wage gap, housing, Swiss bank accounts, tax - all have been under the media spotlight in articles that generate anger and jealousy in equal measure.
The Government has been a big supporter of apprenticeships over the past few years, which is great for young people, business and the economy.
Since graduating, I have followed my parents in working exclusively within state education, although unlike them I don't do the really difficult and important job of teaching. Every day I believe more and more (and from a high start-point) in the tremendous value of what the college I work at does, and of the wider system.
My thoughts are with those who are turning 18 in the next few years. The world is a vastly different place to when I was young, and today's newly 'legal' adults are met with intense challenges, not least of which is simply getting a job.