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Daily News Summary
18 September 2020

Coronavirus: Scientists propose half-term national lockdown
GCSEs and A-levels 2020: Attainment gap 'has not widened as a result of exam cancellations'
Schools that do not teach about LGBT+ relationships next year 'could fail inspections'

Coronavirus: Scientists propose half-term national lockdown


Scientists from the Government's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies have reportedly proposed a two-week nationwide lockdown in October to coincide with the half-term break. Tes.

Professor Tim Spector, who developed the coronavirus symptom tracker app, has said children with a cough or congestion almost certainly have the common cold, and should not be getting tested. By Victoria Ward, The Telegraph.

The Guardian reports the number of pupils in England learning from home has more than doubled in the space of a week, as growing numbers are sent home to self-isolate. By Sally Weale.

Jules White, headteacher at Tanbridge House School, writes in The Guardian warning "without rapid and reliable testing, which prioritises staff and schoolchildren, the whole system will grind to a halt".

Schools Week reports the Government is considering increasing the number of coronavirus testing kits issued to schools. By John Dickens.

Tom Bennett, behaviour adviser to the Department for Education, offers guidance to teachers on how to encourage pupils to follow face covering rules in school. The Telegraph.

Paul Norton, the principal and proprietor of Kings Monkton School in Cardiff, has written to Wales' education minister Kirsty Williams arguing the Government is "reneging on its duty of care" by failing to provide face masks for independent school pupils. BBC News.

Lord Lexden, president of the Independent Schools Association, submitted a written question asking the Government how it planned to amend the terms of reference of the National Tutoring Programme, to enable independent schools to fully participate. In response, Baroness Berridge said there are "no plans to change those terms", though existing tutoring providers welcome applications from organisations that do meet the criteria. Hansard.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned that schools in disadvantaged areas of England will receive less in government funding than those in more affluent areas, leaving them "badly placed" to help pupils catch up on their learning. By Judith Burns, BBC News.


GCSEs and A-levels 2020: Attainment gap 'has not widened as a result of exam cancellations'


Analysis from the FFT Education Datalab has found that while the GCSE attainment gap between disadvantaged pupils and their peers remains "worryingly large", it appears to have closed slightly, despite the cancellation of exams this year. By Claudia Civinini, Tes.

An article in Tes reports 68.4 per cent of undergraduates starting at the University of Oxford this year will have attended state schools. By Catherine Lough.

Chris Millward, director for fair access and participation at the Office for Students, writes in The Times arguing students applying to university next year "will need extra support to get on track" following the coronavirus disruption.


Schools that do not teach about LGBT+ relationships next year 'could fail inspections'


The Telegraph reports secondary schools that do not teach pupils about same-sex, transgender and bisexual relationships next year could be judged as 'requiring improvement' by Ofsted inspectors. By Camilla Turner.

The Telegraph


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