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Daily News Summary
3 July 2020

Coronavirus: Parents face fines for not sending their children back to school in September
Friday Feature: How schools are coming together to support their wider communities

Coronavirus: Parents face fines for not sending their children back to school in September


Education secretary Gavin Williamson has said families who do not send their children back to school in autumn face financial penalties unless they have a "good reason" to keep them at home. By Anna Mikhailova, Harry Yorke and Camilla Turner, The Telegraph.

Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, has said the updated guidance for schools is "enormously challenging to implement", urging the Government to have "a national Plan B in place". By Nicola Woolcock, The Times. Paul Whiteman, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, has expressed similar views, arguing the Government should have a back-up plan in place "should it be required". By Rosemary Bennett and Nicola Woolcock, The Times.

An article in The Telegraph explores the reaction among teachers to the Government's plans for the full reopening of schools. By Katie Russell and Jack Rear. The article quotes Mark Mortimer, head of Bryanston School.

An anonymous teacher has written a letter in The Telegraph addressed to parents, in which they apologise for the disruption to children's education and thank parents for "doing a great job" during lockdown.

Robert Halfon, a Conservative MP and chairman of the education committee, writes in The Times describing the Government's announcement as a "giant leap forward", adding: "The trade unions, the opposition frontbench and all those in education need to come together to make sure schools open in September."

Ofqual has confirmed next year's exams could be delayed by a month and changes could be made to some subjects to free up more teaching time and allow for social distancing. By Will Hazell, iNews. An article in The Telegraph breaks down the proposed changes to next year's exam series subject by subject. By Camilla Turner.

Dr Millan Sachania, headmaster of Streatham & Clapham High School, writes to The Times arguing pupils unsatisfied with their grades this year "will be disputing the outcome of a mechanical process... rather than the honest appraisal of the professionals that have an intimate and detailed knowledge of their abilities". The letter can be found halfway down the page.

According to a survey of more than 2,400 school staff, 75 per cent of respondents said they want training in remote learning. By John Roberts, Tes.

Tes reports on updated guidance for schools which states Ofsted inspections will be suspended until January 2021, while school league tables will remain in place. By Catherine Lough.

Paediatric specialists have voiced concern over findings from a new report which suggest the number of child abuse cases has soared during lockdown. By Sarah Knapton, The Telegraph.

The Telegraph reports headteachers have warned activity levels amongst children have "significantly dropped" during lockdown, with figures suggesting one in 10 children have been getting no daily exercise while schools have remained closed. By Tom Morgan. A separate article in The Telegraph explores the impact lockdown has had on the fitness levels of girls and boys. By Maria Lally.

The Office for Students has prohibited universities from making 'conditional unconditional offers' until September 2021, warning those that flout the rule face fines of up to £500,000 per breach. By Will Hazell, iNews.


Friday Feature: How schools are coming together to support their wider communities


The penultimate instalment of the ISC's 'good news' blog explores how schools are continuing to support their wider communities during lockdown, from providing thousands of meals for the vulnerable to running a remote bake-off competition in support of the NHS.



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