The Big Idea

Time for affirmative action

Mike Ion  |  3 September 2012

We should look to Texas to balance equity and access to higher education in the future, writes Mike Ion According to a report published by the Sutton Trust this year students who leave some of our highest-performing state comprehensive schools with the equivalent of at least three A grades at A level are a third …

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An education in aid

Alex Ross-Shaw  |  12 July 2012

We can put international development into the heart of every classroom, writes Alex Ross-Shaw International development will always be one of the cornerstones of any list of achievements for the last Labour government. The creation of a dedicated department signalled our intent, investment tripled, and we earned a global reputation as one of the best, most …

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Time out of mind

Sarah Bickerstaffe  |  1 June 2012

Expanding mental health first aid training could improve wellbeing and save money, writes Sarah Bickerstaffe When David Cameron talks about measuring national happiness it is easy to feel cynical. Is this really the time to be spending money and effort on something that in the current climate of austerity could appear trivial? And won’t it …

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Clear blue water

Mary Creagh MP  |  5 April 2012

Labour can stand up for a fairer deal by demanding greater responsibility in the water industry, writes Mary Creagh Rising energy bills and petrol prices are putting the squeeze on families at a time of higher living costs and lower wages. But there is also an emerging crisis of water affordability. At the beginning of …

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Sparking children’s imagination

John Healey MP  |  6 March 2012

We should extend to the children of armed forces personnel a scheme which helps under-fives build their own collection of books, writes John Healey Armed forces personnel and their families make sacrifices for the rest of us: I want the government to make a modest extra effort to reward them by backing the extension of …

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Help to care

Parmjit Dhanda  |  13 February 2012

Labour should back tax relief for ‘granny annexes’, suggests Parmjit Dhanda The lack of political consensus on how the UK faces up to, let alone tackles, our national care crisis is something we should all be worried about. Labour made some proposals far too close to the end of the last parliament – which the …

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Blazing a trail

Anna Turley MP  |  25 January 2012

Referendums this May provide the opportunity to transform England’s biggest cities. Anna Turley on the debate over elected mayors The idea of elected mayors for English cities has been a flame that has spluttered and flickered but never quite ignited. This May could finally be its moment to blaze – renewing civic leadership and pride, …

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Labour’s business

Luke Bozier and Alex Smith  |  28 November 2011

Labour can become the party of enterprise if it adopts eye-catching new ideas to support small business, say Luke Bozier and Alex Smith Enterprise is not just good for the economy; it is good for society. Small- and medium-sized businesses employ 14 million people in the UK. They are the foundation of strong and vibrant …

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Time to care

Marc Woolfson  |  2 November 2011

We can help tackle the social care crisis by keeping carers in work and plugging the funding gap, says Marc Woolfson It has become an unfortunate truism that the adult social care funding gap is one of the great unresolved political issues of recent times. Our rapidly ageing society is creating unsustainable demand for care …

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Back to school for the NHS

Duncan Enright  |  26 September 2011

A school health service could transform health outcomes for children and bring about a truly ‘people-centred NHS’, says Duncan Enright Since the 2005 election the parties have been engaged in a bidding war, each declaring their love for the NHS. The coalition wastes time and effort on new structures and organisations, when what we need …

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