Posted: 25 July 2014

15 young people question experts about school costs

When I heard a 14-year-old boy challenge a witness in parliament last week by stating that what had been said did not reflect his own experience of being a student, I realised exactly why The Children’s Commission on Poverty was right to insist at looking at poverty through young eyes.

The exchange was one of many occasions during three days when the young commissioners asked searching questions of a wide range of experts. You can review summaries of each session on the commission’s website.

The evidence the experts provided added to the experiences of the commissioners themselves and the young people were keen to explore further whenever they heard things that did not ring true or surprised them. The witnesses were respectful and gave the young commissioners a lot of information and ideas to consider.

Tell the commission what you think 

The sessions in parliament were part of the commission’s inquiry into the costs of school for children living in poverty. The inquiry is the commission’s way to gather as much information as possible about the impact the costs of school meals, uniforms and other materials can have on families on low incomes. 

Equally importantly, the commissioners also want to hear what it feels like to be a young person at school in that situation.

The commission launched its inquiry in June with a call for written evidence. The deadline for submissions is 5pm on Monday July 28 – please submit your evidence on their website. 

The commission is keen to hear from as many people as possible.

Find out more about last week’s sessions in parliament, visit the Children’s Commission on Poverty website

By Martin Jones - Campaigns team

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