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Daily News Summary
6 May 2020

Coronavirus: Reopening all schools at once 'could risk second wave'
Review into SEND provision must address "significant failings", committee warns
'Phonics are here to stay'

Coronavirus: Reopening all schools at once 'could risk second wave'


Foreign secretary Dominic Raab has said reopening all schools at the same time could increase the rate of infection and cause a second wave. Gavin Williamson, the education secretary, has confirmed not all pupils will return to schools at once when lockdown restrictions are eased. By Nicola Woolcock, The Times. An article in iNews reports 10 teaching unions across the UK and Ireland have written to education ministers warning that reopening schools before a 'test, trace and isolate' strategy is in place would be "catastrophic to the rate of infection". By Will Hazell. According to a survey of members of the National Association of Head Teachers, 83 per cent believe an inability to implement appropriate social distancing measures would make it difficult to reopen schools to more pupils. Tes.

An updated report released by Nicola Sturgeon states schools in Scotland might not "reopen at all in the near future", amid concerns that opening schools before the summer holidays could lead to a resurgence in coronavirus cases. By Simon Johnson, The Telegraph.

Findings from a poll conducted by the NEU suggest 23 per cent of teachers are having to stay at home to protect themselves or members of their household due to pre-existing medical vulnerabilities or pregnancy. By Catherine Lough, Tes.

Ofqual has confirmed pupils in Year 10 and below will be eligible to receive "calculated" GCSE grades this year. By Catherine Lough, Tes.

ITV News reports on the increasing pressure for the Government in Jersey to provide support for independent schools and fee-paying parents experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

The Education Policy Institute has published a series of recommendations for the Government today, in which it suggests Ofsted inspections should be suspended until next year and a 'Teacher Volunteer Scheme' should be launched to help disadvantaged pupils catch up on their education. By Samantha Booth, Schools Week.

The Telegraph reports on the difficulties some families are facing with digital learning, after a survey found more than a third of parents with children aged between five and 16 do not have access to a laptop or computer. By Hannah Boland.

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Early Years Alliance, writes in Tes warning about the "huge ramifications" of preschool closures on society, after a survey found a quarter of providers believe it is "unlikely" they will still be operating in a year's time.

Tes reports the Child Poverty Action Group in Scotland is calling on local authorities to replace free school meals with cash payments to ensure "no child goes hungry" during the pandemic. By Emma Seith.


Review into SEND provision must address "significant failings", committee warns


The Public Accounts Committee has said the Department for Education's review of provision for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) must lead to "concrete action" to address "significant failings". By Freddie Whittaker, Schools Week.

Schools Week

'Phonics are here to stay'


Dr Julian Grenier, a headteacher and co-leader of the East London Research School, writes in Tes calling for an end to the "reading war", arguing "conclusive" research shows synthetic phonics programmes help children learn how to read.



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