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Teachers 'provide vital life assistance'

By Wesleyan

Schools are shelling out millions of pounds a year on supporting pupils from deprived backgrounds, a union claims.

Teachers are providing help with all aspects of life, from paying for food and clothing to covering transport costs and filling out official paperwork for families, it said.

The National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) says its members are plugging funding gaps in public services and schools are now operating as "mini welfare states".

Some staff are even washing children's clothes at school and buying birthday presents and cards for pupils who are not likely to receive any from their relatives, it suggested.

They are also offering lifts to and from home or after-school clubs, providing haircuts and head lice treatment, and attending legal, medical and social services appointments with parents.

Russell Hobby, general secretary of NAHT, issued an urgent warning to politicians.

He says that, despite pledges by parties to protect education spending, cuts to other areas of public services may impact schools.

Copyright Press Association 2015

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