Monday, 29 June 2020

29 June 2020 National Tutoring Programme to address the impact of school closures

The National Tutoring Programme (NTP) is a government-funded initiative, for the academic year 2020-21, to support schools in addressing the impact of the Covid-19 closures on pupils' learning

It is available to primary and secondary state-maintained schools and will provide additional support to help pupils who have missed out the most as a result of school closures

It consists of two pillars

- NTP partners - from an approved list of organisations, schools will be able to access heavily subsidised tutoring

- NTP coaches - these will be trained graduates employed by schools in the most disadvantaged areas to provide intensive catch-up support to pupils

Using quality standards and criteria to support the most disadvantaged pupils, school leaders and teachers will decide which approach best fits their needs, which partners to work with and which pupils will benefit most from the additional tuition

The NTP has been designed through the collaboration of the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF), Sutton Trust, Impetus and Nesta who will be involved in the initial delivery of the programme

Thursday, 25 June 2020

25 June 2020 Ofsted inspectors will be asked to check how schools are helping pupils catch up on missed teaching

The Education Secretary has announced that schools will be asked to check on missed teaching

Last week, the government announced a £1billion funding package, with £650million to aid pupils who have fallen behind as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the remainder being spent on a national tutoring programme

Gavin Williamson said that he would be asking Ofsted to look at 'how this has been implemented, and children have been supported in their catch-up plans'

Routine inspections of schools have been suspended since March and the chief inspector said that they are unlikely to resume before the end of the Summer term

Tuesday, 16 June 2020

15 June 2020 Schools can delay the introduction of relationships and sex education

The Department for Education (DfE) has said that schools can postpone the teaching of relationships and sex education (RSE) until the Summer term in 2021 because of coronavirus

Originally, from September 2020, relationships education was to become compulsory in English state primary schools and relationships and sex education compulsory in secondary schools

The decision to allow schools to delay starting RSE has been taken to give them more time to prepare to deliver the curriculum and engage with parents

However, schools that feel ready to deliver the new curriculum are being encouraged to start lessons from 1 September, or through a phased approach during the academic year

The DFE also says that schools should consider prioritising lessons on mental health and wellbeing, as pupils return to schools following periods at home

Friday, 12 June 2020

12 June 2020 £7m to support pupils leaving Alternative Provision

The Department for Education (DfE) is to provide £7m to support more than 11000 vulnerable young people who leave Alternative Provision every year

The young people are at risk of falling out of education after their GCSEs and will benefit from mentoring, pastoral support and careers guidance including through the work of transition coaches and mentors

Statistics indicate that 59% of pupils in Alternative Provision go on to a sustained post-16 destination, compared to the 94% attending mainstream schools; 23% of those leaving Alternative Provision are Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET)

Tuesday, 2 June 2020

2 June 2020 PrimarySite publishes report on MAT growth

PrimarySite ( has published a research report on the growth of multi-academy trusts (MATs) - the research was focused on understanding more about how MATs had experienced growth and how they might grow in the future

The report recommended

- More incentives for schools to join MATs, such as through the Trust Capacity Fund, would support further growth 

- MATs should invest more in leadership development so they can access the necessary skills to grow sustainably

- Taking on schools with the same value and ethos may make sense but can constrain potential growth

- The arrangement of MATs across the country is irregular and, at times, inhibits growth

- Mergers of MATs are likely in the next three years and trust boards need to put in place criteria for discussing mergers

- The role of the RSCs is likely to play a key role in how trusts merge

- More MATs need to have a good understanding of marketing and developing a meaningful online presence

- COVID-19 means that the growth of MATs will be slower in the short-term with the larger ones being able to cope with the impact of the crisis more quickly and start planning for growth sooner