Politics can be a confusing and noisy place for anyone, regardless of how clever you are. That’s why this edition of ‘Mastering Politics’ is everything you need to know about the current Labour leader (as of May 2018), Jeremy Corbyn.

Upbringing

Jeremy Corbyn was born in 1949 in Chippenham to a maths teacher mother and electrical engineer father. He was educated at the independent Castle House School before attending Adams’ Grammar School.

Mr Corbyn achieved two ‘E’ grades at A Level, and left school at 18. He worked in Jamaica as a volunteer youth worker and geography teacher aged 19, and later began a degree at North London Polytechnic before dropping out after a year.

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Political beginnings

In 1971, Jeremy Corbyn returned to the UK and began working for the National Union of Tailors and Garment Workers before becoming a trade union organiser.

Following his work with the trade unions, Mr Corbyn became a councillor in 1974 for the South Hornsey ward of Haringey Council, and remained in the post until 1983. In 1982, Corbyn became the Member of Parliament for Islington North, and remains so to this day.

During his time as a backbench MP, he was arrested for protesting against the apartheid regime in South Africa and supported LGBT rights, as well as the 1984-85 miners’ strike, during which he invited striking miners into the House of Commons.

As Labour leader

It is fair to say that nobody expected Jeremy Corbyn to become the leader of the Labour Party following their 2015 election defeat. On the basis of opening up the political debate, he secured just enough nominations to run for Labour leader, and won the membership vote.

Since then, Mr Corbyn has taken the Labour Party into a general election where they eclipsed the Conservative Party’s majority, but failed to take control of the government. Corbyn has continuously stood on an anti-austerity (anti-cuts) ideology, and has promised to scrap student tuition fees if elected, as well as a National Education Service to safeguard education funding.