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Free school meals

New survey: families lack digital tools for home learning and worry more about costs

17 March 2021
More than a third of low-income families are missing essential digital resources for future home learning; parents had to make ‘impossible choices’ to decide who got access to digital devices and bandwidth while schools were closed; concern about money is higher than last year among poorer families; 90% of low-income families spent more on bills with children at home in lockdown.

The Cost of Learning in Lockdown: March 2021 update

14 March 2021
The Cost of Learning in Lockdown (March 2021 update) is a report based on surveys carried out with parents, carers, children and young people asking them about their family's experience of learning during lockdown, with particular focus on families struggling with money.

Campaigners welcome budget boost for struggling families

09 March 2021
Campaigners today welcomed further budget commitments agreed between the Scottish government and Scottish Greens. The deal, announced today Monday 8th March, includes two further £100 payments for children in receipt of free school meals, following on from winter and spring payments this year, as well as a new Pandemic Support Payment of £130 to households receiving Council Tax Reduction. Resources are also committed to rolling out free school meals to all primary school pupils.

Turning the Page on Poverty: new resource for teachers and school staff

22 February 2021
We've produced a practical resource for educations staff to help tackle poverty and the cost of the school day, in collaboration with Children North East and the National Education Union.

Educational outcomes without secure incomes

17 February 2021
Today, the departing Children’s Commissioner for England, Anne Longfield, posed an important question in her final speech. She asked how the government can claim to be focused on educational catch-up on the one hand, while at the same time refusing to give families income security and risking more children being pushed into poverty. This is a crucial point. Poverty at home is the strongest statistical predictor of how well a child will do in school.

Our 2021 Budget submission

09 February 2021
CPAG's submission to the UK government ahead of the 2021 Budget.

Learning lessons from last lockdown: what helps school children and families on low incomes

14 January 2021
As a second lockdown begins, school buildings and playgrounds across Scotland are once again closed, and families face more home learning. We all know 2020 was an incredibly difficult year for many of us, but for those living on lower incomes the extra pressure has made maintaining family life even harder. As we enter a second lockdown what can we do to ensure school at home will work for everyone? From what children and parents told us last time around, we have established a set of actions and guidelines to help us move forward.

Open letter to Gavin Williamson on home learning

11 January 2021
Today we and Children North East have sent an open letter to the Secretary of State for Education Gavin Williamson MP, which lays out a set of guiding principles that we advise the government to use to make decisions about home education during this lockdown period.

New survey shows deteriorating living standards for low-income families as a result of Covid-19

14 December 2020
Low-income families with children are even worse off now than they were in the summer, the latest Poverty in the Pandemic report from Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) and the Church of England shows. Nearly 9 in 10 families report a significant deterioration in their living standards because of the pandemic – up from 8 in 10 families who responded to an earlier survey between May and July 2020.

Poverty in the pandemic: An update on the impact of coronavirus on low-income families and children

14 December 2020
In August, Child Poverty Action Group and the Church of England published a report, Poverty in the Pandemic, which offered a glimpse into the lives of low-income families trying to survive the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. This report provides an update on how families with children are managing financially, based on an additional 393 online survey responses received in the period since the last report was published, up to the end of November 2020.