General Election 2024: questions for your local candidate


The Chartered College of Teaching believes that improving education is key to achieving success in many other policy areas. I want my MP to make education their priority. What will your party’s policies mean for our local schools and colleges? How will you work with teachers to make sure education includes and supports all pupils?

⚪ Focus on your own experience in education, and the challenges and opportunities you see in your local area. What plans does the candidate have to engage with education staff, school governors, parents and children, employers and other agencies, in order to represent local education issues in Parliament?

⚪ In 2023, 76% of teachers told the DfE they didn’t believe they were valued by society. 90% said they didn’t believe their views were valued by policy-makers or the government.

We’re calling on the government to focus on professionalism in order to improve education for children and young people, and to make teaching an attractive profession. This includes valuing and supporting teacher expertise, improving staff wellbeing, and making sure that teachers are included in the discussion when decisions are made about education.

Reference: ‘Working lives of teachers and leaders: wave 2 summary report’


We need more teachers in order to keep providing a high quality education for children and young people. Not enough people want to be teachers and too many people are leaving. Why do you think that is? What policies do you have to address it?

⚪ According to the latest school workforce data, the teaching workforce grew by just 259 full time equivalent teachers in the year to November 2023. Targets for recruiting new secondary teachers were missed in all but three subjects (history, PE and classics) last year. The teaching profession isn’t diverse – 60% of schools in England had an all-White teaching staff in 2021/22.

⚪ Teachers reported working an average of 52.4 hours a week in 2023, while leaders reported 58.2 hours. While some workload is coming down, teachers highlight that pupil behaviour and the need for pastoral care is increasing their workload:  63% of teachers suggested that support from outside agencies for SEND, mental health and safeguarding would help to reduce workload.

⚪ The accountability system, including Ofsted, has a negative impact on teachers’ workload and stress levels, and only 15% of teachers and leaders believe that inspection gives a fair reflection of school performance.

⚪ A quarter of teachers and leaders spent under 10 hours on formal professional development in 2022. Those who spend more time learning believe they are better at doing the job, and they are more satisfied with their jobs.

⚪ We’re calling on the government to value teacher expertise, with better career opportunities and rewards for experienced as well as new teachers, and funded time for professional development. We want to work with the new government to develop a better accountability system, including improving inspection.

Reference: ‘Reporting year 2023: School workforce in England’
Reference: ‘Teacher labour market in England Annual Report 2023’
Reference: ‘Working lives of teachers and leaders: wave 2 summary report’


Too many children and young people find school difficult and don’t want to be there. Poor mental health is on the rise, and too many pupils don’t have enough to eat or a safe place to live. How will your party support children and their families in this area?

⚪ In 2023, just over 20% of pupils were persistently absent from school (missing more than 10% of sessions) – nearly 1.6m pupils.

⚪ One in five children and young people in England had a probable mental health disorder in 2023.

⚪ 4.3m children are growing up in poverty in the UK 

⚪ Primary school staff estimate that 48% of their pupils had experienced hardship (going without essentials such as food, heating or appropriate clothing because they can’t afford it) at some point since the start of the school year 

⚪ Teachers know that children who live in poor housing, or in families who struggle financially, come to school tired, hungry and worried, and need a great deal of practical and emotional support before they are ready to learn.

We’re calling on the government to build a funded strategy to reduce child poverty, and to increase funding for services that provide support networks around schools, including social care, family support, mental health, educational psychology, youth work. Meeting the basic needs of children and young people is essential for society, helps children come to school ready to learn, and reduces the workload of education staff so that they can focus on teaching. 

Reference: Research briefing for school attendance in England
Reference: NHS England News
Reference: JRF News

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