Wednesday, 16 December 2020

16 December 2020 Ofsted report says that Covid-19 isolation is having a detrimental effect on pupils' education and welfare

Ofsted has published its third report looking at the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on children and young people; inspectors carried out nearly 2000 visits to education and social care providers during the term

The main findings from its visits to schools show that repeated absences due to Covid-19 outbreaks have resulted in pupils losing more learning - many children are thought to be at least six months behind where they ought to be

In just over half of the schools visited, pupils in bubbles were sent home to self-isolate at some point during the term.  More children were sent home in bubbles from secondary schools than primaries

Inspectors found that schools were having to provide remote education under two circumstances: bubble isolation and individual isolation.  Many schools were making real progress with remote provision for bubbles, which often included live or pre-recorded online lessons.  However, pupils who were self-isolating often had a poorer experience, often missing out on the new content being taught to their peers in class

Inspectors also found that pupils with SEND often struggled with the restrictions placed on them, with many of them not attending school full-time and remote education being a challenge for some 

The report also reveals that the number of children being home schooled has risen again; almost three-fifths of schools told inspectors they had at least one pupil whose parents had removed them from school to be home educated since the start of term

Monday, 14 December 2020

14 December 2020 Oracy All-Party Parliamentary Group publishes interim report

The Oracy All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) has published its interim report.  The report highlights that young people have unequal access to opportunities to develop their oracy skills in schools in England.

It emphasises the importance of developing pupils' confidence and competence in spoken language, particularly in view of the disruption to education over the last year.

The Oracy APPG is calling for better support for teachers to embed oracy in lessons and raised expectations for pupils' entitlement to quality oracy teaching, in order to harness the potential of oracy to address educational inequality, improve employability and support wellbeing.

The final report is due in Spring 2021.

Thursday, 3 December 2020

3 December 2020 Full Ofsted inspections will not return until Easter, but there will be supportive monitoring for some schools

The government has announced that the return of full inspections has now been pushed back until the Summer term.  The key points are

- Full graded inspections will not resume until the Summer term at the earliest

- From January, Ofsted will run 'supportive' monitoring inspections for schools rated as 'inadequate', and some that are 'requires improvement'

- The inspections will focus on issues like curriculum, remote education and pupil attendance, particularly of vulnerable children

- Ofsted will have the power to inspect schools if they have serious concerns including over safeguarding and remote education

Tuesday, 1 December 2020

26 November 2020 Key messages for education from the spending review

 There are a number of key points for schools from the spending review

- The government has confirmed that it is committed to the £30K starting salary for teachers, despite the pay freeze for certain public sector workers

- The three-year funding settlement for education remains, with a £7.1 billion increase by 2022-23

- 500 schools will be rebuilt over the next ten years; there is also £1.8 billion in funding to help maintain and improve the condition of school buildings

- There is a commitment to spend £300 million on new school places for children with SEND; however, there is no reference to the free schools programme

- The National Tutoring Programme will be extended for a further year

- Schools will receive an additional £22 million to release staff to mentor new teachers as part of the government's early career framework