The Budget mustn’t ignore how Covid has marred the life chances of the poorest children

Anyone hoping that Rishi Sunak will cough up serious extra funding to help schools rectify the damage wrought by Covid will be sorely disappointed, writes Ed Dorrell

Tuesday 26 October 2021 10:29
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<p>‘It was only in the spring that Boris Johnson told his newly appointed catch up tsar that there was essentially no limit to his commitment to fix lost learning’ </p>

‘It was only in the spring that Boris Johnson told his newly appointed catch up tsar that there was essentially no limit to his commitment to fix lost learning’

If you take a stroll through a town or city centre on a Friday evening – assuming you can ignore the many boarded up shops – you would be forgiven for imagining things are back to normal.

Bars, pubs, restaurants, taxis and public transport are doing great business. People clearly have a strong urge to get back in the swing of things. Similarly, offices are beginning to show signs of life. Setting to one side the increases in infection and the heightened likelihood of ‘Plan B’ being implemented before Christmas, it is clear that people want Covid-19 to fade into memory. The pandemic is something that is often discussed only in the past tense, even written off as a bad dream.

I see this in the focus groups I run – people are less and less keen to talk about their experiences of the pandemic. They want it to be done, over, finished.

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