The importance of free education for all
Before the 19th century, very few British children had access to free secondary education. Child labour across the whole of the country was widespread and many younger people from poorer backgrounds reached adulthood without knowing how to read or write.
Free education is essential
Thankfully, in the 21st century, every child in the country has access to free primary and secondary education. The introduction of the 1944 education act ensured that all children across the UK would be able to secure compulsory secondary education. Schooling gives young people of all ages the ability to enjoy the benefits of increased work opportunities and personal fulfilment, regardless of income or family background. The inspirational resources supplied by educational suppliers, including Hope Education, allow a child to develop their potential and imagination and to be able to make the most of their opportunities.
The importance of education
A good education can give a child access to a limitless world of opportunities. The current Secretary of State for International Development, Justine Greening, was educated at ‘her local Rotherham Comprehensive school,’ and there are countless other public figures who have used their free education as a springboard to success. Of course, having supportive families and a stable background will all help a child exploit their potential, but compulsory education does ensure that a child should be able to leave school with a number of choices at their fingertips.
Fee paying versus state
In the UK, there is frequent discussion about the merits of a fee paying private education against a free state system. Not all independent schools are as well equipped as some state schools, and there are other differences. Not all children necessarily benefit from a private school. While the leading public schools offer networking opportunities, their fees are astronomically high and beyond the reach of most. A pupil from a state school can still enter the UK’s top universities and in 2014, Cambridge announced that it was spending £4.5 million to attract more state educated pupils.
The dangers of denying education
Without access to free education, many young people across the world will never enjoy a real childhood. In numerous countries, children are the victims of war, famine and discord. Alternatively, they are sent out to work, and reading and writing remain of secondary importance. Without an education children are condemned to a life of poverty and hardship.
In recognition of the importance of universal free compulsory education, the famous Nobel Prize winner, Malala Yousafzai, addressed the United Nations in 2013 to plead for education as a right for all children. According to figures released by the United Nations, there are currently 58 million children across the planet that don’t have access to this valuable resource. In a bid to remedy this huge ill, the United Nations has started a campaign to try and establish more schools across the world. Speaking about this issue, former Prime Minister, Gordon Brown – in his role as United Nations Special Envoy for Education – said, ‘when will governments learn that education is too important to be left to chance?’
A free education gives any child anywhere, the passport to unlock their potential and access a better life.
Contributor: Jessica Foreman