• Kia Fullerton

Children from poorest families are a week and a half behind classmates, research suggests

Children in wealthier households will have had an extra week and a half of education than those in less affluent family settings, a survey has suggested.

Due to Coronavirus children have resulted to online classrooms for their education until they are to return to school, now scheduled to happen on 1 June.

A survey of 4,000 parents in England conducted by the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS), has found children in more affluent home settings are spending 30 per cent more time each day on learning, than children from the poorest fifth of households.

The survey carried out between 29 April and 12 May, indicates that children in better-off families will have experienced the equivalent of an extra 1.5 school weeks of home learning time compared to poorer children by June.

Wealthier households were also twice as likely to have access to a private tutor, with 12% of the most affluent students receiving an hour or more of private tuition each school day.

There are concerns that due school closures, this will further cause inequalities between children in the richest and poorest families.

Lucy Kraftman, research economist at IFS and an author of the report, said: "There are significant differences in how children are spending their time during school closures.

"Children in lower-income households are spending significantly less time on both schoolwork and non-school learning activities than their better-off peers."

Kraftman added, "Children in better-off families are also more than twice as likely to receive private tutoring, with around 12% of these students being tutored for an hour or more each day.

"These differences will likely widen pre-existing gaps in test scores between children from different backgrounds."

Source: The Independent

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