Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, has published ‘Growing Up North’, a year-long report looking at the issues and experiences of children growing up in the North today.
‘Growing Up North’ is the culmination of twelve months of research, analysis and conversations with children, schools, business, councils, health professionals and charities. It is designed to increase understanding of children’s attitudes, aspirations and expectations, look at the progression of children from early years to early adulthood and assess the opportunities provided by the Northern Powerhouse to children growing up in the North (Yorkshire and the Humber, North West and North East).
It is an optimistic report that praises the ambitions of the Northern Powerhouse project, but it also warns that many of the most disadvantaged children in the North are falling far behind their equivalents in the South, particularly children growing up in London. They are less likely to do well in secondary school, more likely to go to a poor school and more likely to leave education early. While some parts of the North have some of the best primary schools in the country, many secondary schools are struggling. The report calls on the Northern Powerhouse Project to give children the same attention as economic regeneration, otherwise the promise of the Powerhouse will not be realised.
The report includes the views and experiences – both positive and negative – of children growing up in the North