It's been quite a week for the grand return of Parliament. They had a debated Syria, they debated privacy and security, they had a heartfelt debate about the horrors of baby loss. All of which are huge, important issues.
Mostly, though, they debated Brexit. Hard, hard, Brexit. Don't forget, though, that this is all negotiating. It's an attempt to start from a 'we want nothing from you, foreign EU people' standpoint. They can play hardball too. Donald Tusk, one of the head honchos over in Brussels, said we're definitely getting nothing but a hard Brexit. We'll see. There are years of this to come.
More immediately, they're making laws. Here are the highlights of next week's agenda.
Children and Social Work Bill
This Bill started in the Lords and is about to have its Report Stage before bouncing over to the Commons. It will speed up the adoption process and schools and councils will have to work harder on improving the educational attainment of children in care. This is the first Bill that new Education Secretary, Justine Greening, will have to pick up on after Nicky Morgan introduced it.
This will bring in a ‘universal service obligation’ for internet access. So every person would have the legal right to broadband which is at least 10Mbps, in the same way people have the right to a phone line and postal services.
Most MPs are supportive of this but implementing it is more difficult in rural and hard to reach areas.
Savings (Government Contributions) Bill
These were George Osborne’s plans from what became his last budget. It sets up a Help to Save scheme, where people on in-work benefits saving £50 a month receive a 50% top up in 2 years, up to £600. It will also set up a Lifetime ISA for under 40s, with 35% top up on savings up to £4,000 a year. Expect Labour to say it doesn’t go far enough for those struggling the most.
Higher Education is also being debated this week. We've got videos like this for every major law in front of Parliament. Head to www.simplepolitics.co.uk to see!
Are you a teacher? Are any of your friends teachers?
We do loads of stuff for / with schools. We can really help with Citizenship / Politics / British Values etc in the new school year. Some free services, some paid for (but, I think, very good value).
Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org to see how we can help.