Letter in Sunday Times, 23/6/13

Re: “Poor white children do worst at school” June 16, 2013, p1 by Sian Griffiths

It is good to see Ofsted highlighting the poor performance of children in coastal areas and most importantly calling for new policies and approaches to close this gap. We can hope that Sir Michael Wilshaw’s intervention will lead to action. The problem was increasingly evident to me during my two years, just ended, as Schools Commissioner visiting 150 schools across England. The solution lies in a focus on primaries, engaging parents and certainly in school to school support, the latter having been so successful in the inner cities. There are green shoots to build upon with both private and state schools taking up the baton including the successful collaboration between Tonbridge School, Folkestone School for Girls and The Marsh Academy. The time has come for the disadvantaged children in rural and coastal areas to take precedence.

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