Responding to the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission’s second annual State of the Nation report, Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers’ union in the UK, said:
“The findings of this Report confirm a bleak and depressing picture where child poverty is set to increase, further entrenching the socio-economic divide across the UK.
“Three quarters of teachers surveyed recently by the NASUWT report regularly experiencing children coming to school so hungry they lack energy and are unable to concentrate.
“Teachers report they are regularly giving increasing numbers of children money, food, clothes and equipment, at their own expense.
“Children are arriving in schools without the proper footwear and clothing for the weather conditions.
“These are not issues which are incidental to teachers. Poverty and homeless have a direct impact on educational progress.
“Teachers are being left to pick up the pieces of flawed economic and social policies.
“More than 3.5 million children are now living in poverty and as this report confirms, with the figure set to rise.
“This Report highlights a shameful catalogue of deprivation and misery to which there seems to be no end in sight.”