NCB has issued the following statement in response to the Budget:
Anna Feuchtwang, Chief Executive of the National Children's Bureau said:
"The Government is right to invest in education and to think creatively about how to raise standards for all children, but there are question marks over whether making all schools into academies is the best way to do this. Evidence shows that local authorities are often as effective as academy chains in providing high quality education. There are also serious concerns that removing local authorities from the planning of education across an area could further disadvantage children who are already vulnerable because they have special educational needs, mental health problems or are at risk of missing education."
"The Government's steps to improve child health are welcome and a levy on sugary drinks should help reduce the scandalous level of unnecessary sugar in our foods and worrying rates of childhood obesity. But the money raised from the levy must be used to shore up recent cuts in public health spending so we can encourage more children to understand how the food they eat affects their health. Unfortunately, children's healthcare remains the poor relation in NHS spending and the Chancellor's plans do not go far enough in rebalancing the greater priority given to adult health."
"The Chancellor has told us that this is a budget for the long term yet in many senses it is short sighted. Spending cuts of £3.5bn by 2020 will mean that services that step in early to support children and families will continue their downward spiral. Children's centres, short breaks for disabled children, teenage pregnancy initiatives and youth work will be among services that our analysis shows will see their funding cut by nearly three-quarters in the decade up to 2020.
"This so-called 'next generation' budget masks the fact that severe spending cuts will continue to hit poor and disadvantaged children the hardest - those who the Government should be doing the upmost to support."