I was pleased to see that the sun held up for the long weekend – even if today it’s slightly damper outside. I’m sure that won’t have much of an impact on Scunthorpe United under 21s as we play Sunderland this evening.
Universal Credits will start rolling out in our area from October which is already causing some concern for local residents getting in touch with my office. I understand that from October only new claims will be processed as Universal Credits.
One particular area of concern for me is how Housing Benefit will change as part of the transition and I have concerns for renters and landlords. My staff will be attending a training day this week to see how we can best support people through the transition period.
It was GCSE result day on Thursday which saw parents and pupils alike interpreting the new 1 – 9 grades and the old A* - U. Under the new system the best grade to be awarded is a 9 with a C grade being around a 4 or a 5. I did see someone on my Facebook suggest next time we change the grades we use Emojis but I think that’s a long way off for now!!
64% of pupils across North Lincolnshire achieved Grade 4 pass in both English and maths, with 40% achieving the higher Grade 5 in both subjects. Congratulations to all the pupils who did receive their results and we should also pay tribute to the teachers and parents for the crucial role they played in these achievements.
Looking ahead to my debate in Parliament next week I was very interested to hear from the Sixth Form College Association that the cuts made to 16-19 funding in 2011, 2013 and 2014 have proved particularly damaging. For example, the average Sixth Form College lost 17% of its funding before inflation – a figure that masks the plight of some institutions that lost a third of their funding between 2011 and 2016.
Education funding has long been one of my areas of focus but I am keen to hear from you on what you think my priorities should be as we start this new Parliament. Any suggestions you have are welcome so that together we can make a difference locally. Please do share any views you have with me via my website: http://www.nicdakin.com/have_your_say