Manifesto mania - what are the political parties promising on education?



With the general election just around the corner, we've compiled an overview on who is saying what when it comes to education.


Labour’s manifesto will put £5.6bn into schools to plug the school funding gap.

Their top priorities are:

  • reduce class sizes to less than 30 for all five-, six- and seven-year-olds
  • introduce free school meals for all primary school children
  • launch a commission to look into curriculum and assessment
  • tackle the teacher recruitment and retention crisis by ending the public-sector pay cap
  • extend counselling to all schools to improve children’s mental health.

What are they saying about parents? "Labour will ensure that all schools are democratically accountable, including appropriate controls to see that they serve the public interest and their local communities. We will... simplify the admissions process for parents..."

Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats’ manifesto states their priorities in the next parliament will be:

  • Investing nearly £7 billion extra in our children’s education – increasing school budgets and the Pupil Premium to protect against rising costs and pupil numbers, and introducing a fairer national funding formula
  • Opposing any new selective schools and giving local authorities proper democratic control over admissions and new schools
  • Increase our Early Years Pupil Premium to £1,000 per pupil per year
  • End the 1% cap on teachers’ pay rises
  • Extend free school meals to all children in primary education and promote school breakfast clubs
  • Ensure collaboration between leading education and family organisations to improve the flow of helpful information between home and school without increasing teacher workload.

What are they saying about parents? “Liberal Democrats believe that parents need to be properly empowered and supported with the tools they need to raise the next generation, and involved in the running of their children’s schools. and to ensure that no child slips through the net.”


Prime Minister Theresa May has launched the Conservatives’ manifesto in West Yorkshire.

Here are the Conservatives’ policies for schools. 

  • Build 100 free schools a year
  • Lift ban on selective schools – with conditions such as allowing pupils to join at ages other than 11
  • Expect every 11-year-old to know times tables off by heart
  • Expect 75 per cent of pupils to have entered EBacc by end of next parliament, with 90 per cent by 2025
  • Make sure no school has budget cut as part of new funding formula, and increase overall schools budget by £4 billion by 2022
  • Scrap universal infant free school meals (instead provide breakfast)

What are they saying about parents? “We will consider how Ofsted can give parents more information on what their children are being taught."

Update: since we first published this piece, the Green Party and UKIP have released their manifestos.  

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