Lib Dems announce £2 million to give Hampshire children a brighter future

2,349 3-4 year-olds in Hampshire, including many from Winchester and Chandler’s Ford, would benefit from Liberal Democrat plans to triple funding for the early years pupil premium, which gives extra cash to nurseries, preschools and school receptions when they take on children from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The cash would triple the funding to £1,000 per pupil per year - up from £302 in 2015-16.

Jackie Porter with a school pupil

This will increase the allocation for local authorities in Hampshire from around £676,000 to more than £2 million, and will pay for every disadvantaged child who benefits to receive 570 hours of state-funded early education.

It forms part of a series of policies the Liberal Democrats are announcing ahead of launching their manifesto, with a focus on giving children and young people a brighter future.

These include:

  • Helping people buy their first home for the same cost as renting, with a new model of ‘Rent to Own’ homes
  • Restoring housing benefit for young people
  • Creating a discounted bus pass for 16-21 year olds, giving a 66% discount
  • Introducing votes at 16 for elections and referendums across the UK

As well as:

  • Investing almost £7bn in our schools and colleges
  • Doubling the number of businesses that take apprenticeships
  • Tripling the early years pupil premium
  • Extending free school meals to all primary school students

Jackie Porter, Liberal Democrat candidate for Winchester and Chandler’s Ford commented:

“Ensuring all children in Winchester and Chandler’s Ford have a chance for a brighter future, regardless of their economic and social circumstances, is something I've fought hard for over many years. Today's announcement will help us to do that by providing the investment needed to ensure those from more deprived backgrounds are given the best possible chance in life.

“This forms part of a package to build a fairer Britain and ensure no child or young person is left behind.

“The Liberal Democrats will provide a strong opposition to this Conservative government and stand up against cuts to local schools, hospitals and regional funding.

“A vote for the Liberal Democrats is a vote for a brighter future for people across Winchester and Chandler’s Ford.”

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