I was very pleased to see the Education Secretary announce a £700 million recovery package for children and young people in England – helping them to catch up on learning lost due to the pandemic and access the opportunities they deserve to learn and fulfil their potential. I am incredibly grateful for the efforts of teachers and parents in North Cornwall who have been homeschooling during coronavirus, but we know that the classroom is the best place for our children to be. To further support the re-opening of schools on 8 March we are providing a £700 million programme of catch-up funding, including a Recovery Premium for the most disadvantaged students, funding the extension of the already successful National Tutoring Programme and delivering face-to-face summer schools. This extensive programme of catch-up funding will equip teachers with the tools and resources they need to support their pupils and give children the opportunities they deserve to learn and fulfil their potential.
Last week the International Trade Secretary spoke at the NFU conference about the new doors opening for farmers through free and fair trade in the UK’s future outside of the EU. For nearly fifty years we have been held back by an anti-innovation approach, high tariff walls with the rest of the world, and a ban on our products. We now have the opportunity to set our own tariffs and deal with these issues. We are seizing on our freedom to deepen our trade worldwide and access new markets where the real opportunities lie for Britain and our farmers as we diversify to avoid dependence on one market. I want North Cornwall’ farmers and food producers to be at the heart of our international trade agreements and together we can seize the golden opportunities that lay ahead for us outside of the EU.
You may have seen on the news last week Prime Minister Boris chairing a UN Security Council session on Climate and Security, the first time a British Prime Minister has chaired the Council in almost 30 years. The PM called for international action to reduce carbon emissions and help vulnerable nations to adapt to climate change, enhancing the prosperity and security of our planet for the future. Climate change represents one of the gravest threats to global peace and security. Unless we join together and take bold action to tackle it, the world risks more conflict, displacement, and insecurity in the future. That is why the Prime Minister used our presidency of the UN Security Council to urge world leaders to follow the UK’s lead in committing to reach net-zero emissions and push for more support to help fragile states adapt to climate change, helping avert future conflict, misery, and famine. The UK has led the way on climate action and as we build towards COP26 we will continue to urge others to be equally bold, so that we can avert climate conflicts and protect our planet for future generations.