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Daily News Summary
2 September 2020

Coronavirus: Millions of children across England return to school
Exam results 2020: Education secretary 'told about algorithm flaws two weeks before A-level results day'
Universities minister announces development opportunities for A-level students forced to defer
ISC blog: Innovation – the silver lining of lockdown

Coronavirus: Millions of children across England return to school


BBC News reports millions of pupils in England are returning to school today for the first time in almost six months. By Hannah Richardson.

According to findings from a YouGov survey, 17 per cent of parents in England and Wales are considering keeping their children at home due to concerns about coronavirus. By Will Hazell, iNews.

The Times reports one in six pupils in Scotland did not attend school last week due to increasing infection rates and a resurgence of the common cold. By Mark McLaughlin.

An article in Tes reports there is a "growing interest" in UK boarding schools among families of overseas pupils due to the perception of the country's handling of the pandemic. By Catherine Lough. The article quotes Barnaby Lenon, chairman of the ISC, and Christopher King, chief executive of the Independent Association of Prep Schools.

Sarah Segrave, head of Eaton House The Manor Prep and Julie Robinson, chief executive of the ISC, are featured on Attain magazine's new podcast, where they discuss how independent schools are preparing for the new school year.

Molly Kingsley, co-founder of the parent campaign group Us For Them, has said it is "totally impossible" for some parents to return to work full-time due to a lack of after school activities. By Camilla Turner and Lizzie Roberts, The Telegraph.

An article in The Telegraph offers advice to parents on how to cope with the demands of a new school term. By Rosa Silverman.

Jo Holmes, children, young people and families lead at the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, writes in The Huffington Post arguing a "mental health catch-up" is needed to help pupils recover from the impact the pandemic has had on their lives.

Angela Donkin, chief social scientist at the National Foundation for Educational Research, writes in Tes arguing: "We should not assume that it will be immediately possible to deliver the same quality of teaching, at the same speed, as before the pandemic."

Dr Tara Porter, a clinical psychologist, writes in Tes thanking teachers for their "meaningful and important" contributions as schools welcome pupils back to the classroom.

Education secretary Gavin Williamson has said benchmarking tests will be rolled out in schools in England to see how far pupils have fallen behind during lockdown. By Camilla Turner, The Telegraph.

Former health secretary Jeremy Hunt has suggested teachers should be tested for coronavirus twice a week to reassure parents that school reopenings are safe. By Francis Elliott, The Times.

Schools minister Nick Gibb has said the Government's "very generous" funding increases for schools should be used to cover additional costs incurred during the pandemic. By John Dickens, Schools Week.


Exam results 2020: Education secretary 'told about algorithm flaws two weeks before A-level results day'


The Guardian reports education secretary Gavin Williamson was made aware of issues with the algorithm used to calculate grades two weeks before A-level results were published in England, but was reassured by Ofqual that the flaws could be managed by allowing schools to appeal. By Richard Adams and Heather Stewart.

According to The Times, Mr Williamson is facing criticism for failing to confirm when next year's exams will take place, despite calls for urgent clarity. By Rosemary Bennett.

An article in The Telegraph explores how mature A-level students have been affected by the exams controversy. By Jack Rear.

Sir Peter Lampl, founder and chairman of the Sutton Trust and chairman of the Education Endowment Foundation, writes in The Times in support of a move towards a post-qualification applications system.


Universities minister announces development opportunities for A-level students forced to defer


Higher education minister Michelle Donelan has said the Government will create a range of development opportunities for A-level students who have to wait until 2021 to take up their university place. By Camilla Turner, The Telegraph. Ms Donelan's commentary can be read in full here.


ISC blog: Innovation – the silver lining of lockdown


Samantha Price, president-elect of the Girls’ Schools Association and headmistress of Benenden School, reflects on the development of online learning during lockdown.



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