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Daily News Summary
11 January 2021

Exams 2021: Call for exam grades to be released early this year
Coronavirus: Government urged to limit the number of pupils allowed in school amid rising attendance rates
"Exponential" growth of county lines gangs linked to rise in truancy rates

Exams 2021: Call for exam grades to be released early this year


Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), and Barnaby Lenon, chairman of the Independent Schools Council (ISC), have said schools should receive their pupils' final grades early this year so they can alert officials to any potential discrepancies. By Nicola Woolcock, The Times. The article quotes Helen Pike, master of Magdalen College School in Oxford.

The Sunday Times reports Ofsted is expected to announce "mini" exams for GCSE and A-level pupils, to be marked by their teachers. By Sian Griffiths.


Coronavirus: Government urged to limit the number of pupils allowed in school amid rising attendance rates


The National Association of Head Teachers and ASCL are calling on the Government to limit the number of pupils in school during lockdown, as attendance rates climb to 50 per cent in some areas. By Hannah Richardson, BBC News.

The Department for Education has urged parents to "honour the spirit" of the lockdown and keep their children at home if they can. By Nicola Woolcock, The Times. The article quotes Julie Robinson, chief executive of the ISC, in reference to this year's exam arrangements.

The Independent reports campaigners have launched legal action against the Government, claiming its guidance "forces working class and BAME children into school at the height of a deadly pandemic". By Zoe Tidman.

John Swinney, Scotland's education secretary, has said some parents are feigning key worker status to get their children into school. By Mark McLaughlin, The Times.

Professor Adam Finn, a member of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, has suggested discussions over the vaccine priority list will consider the "critical role" of teachers. By Camilla Turner, The Telegraph.

The Times reports first minister Nicola Sturgeon has said that while the proposal to vaccinate teachers in Scotland before schools reopen was "absolutely not being dismissed", the country has "limited supplies of the vaccine at the moment". By Mark McLaughlin.

Dr Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the National Education Union, has suggested school staff and pupils should wear face masks "at all times" until clearer scientific evidence is publicly shared. By Freddie Whittaker, Schools Week.

New study findings suggest teachers in Sweden were no more likely to contract COVID-19 than the rest of the adult population when schools remained open during the first lockdown. The Telegraph.

An anonymous headteacher writes in The Guardian reflecting on their experience of the first week of term.

According to The Mail on Sunday, some state school headteachers have expressed concerns that hosting live online lessons could be an invasion of teachers' privacy and lead to staff burnout. By Michael Powell and Julie Henry. An article in IE Today explores how schools can keep staff and students safe online. The article quotes several members of staff at schools in membership of the ISC's constituent associations.

Education figures in Scotland have warned the switch to remote learning could become "a dire postcode lottery", as all 32 local authorities have different solutions in place for teaching. By Jason Allardyce, The Sunday Times.

The Telegraph reports some economists have claimed the Government needs to expand the National Tutoring Programme substantially to minimise the long-term economic damage caused by lost learning. By Russell Lynch.

Tanni Grey-Thompson, the 11-times Paralympic champion, writes in The Telegraph in support of the paper's 'Keep Kids Active' campaign, arguing "it is vital that our recovery efforts and our charge to build back better embrace an unwavering focus on children's health and wellbeing". Ali Oliver, chief executive of the Youth Sport Trust, also writes in The Telegraph stating: "Getting young people active not only makes them happier and healthier - it improves their concentration and ability to learn." By Jeremy Wilson. Mr Oliver's commentary piece can be found below the news article.

The Sunday Times explores how the pandemic could help to revolutionise the education sector. By Sian Griffiths.

Bernadka Dubicka, chair of the Royal College of Psychiatrists' Child and Adolescent Faculty, writes in The Telegraph warning the impact of the pandemic on young people's mental health "could plague this generation for years to come".

The Telegraph reports the number of people put on the Government's furlough scheme could rise to six million, as school closures force working parents to care for their children at home. By Tom Rees.


"Exponential" growth of county lines gangs linked to rise in truancy rates


Steve Chalke, founder of the multi-academy trust Oasis, has warned the pandemic has provided an opportunity for county lines gangs to target children, with school truancy rates almost doubling in autumn. By Camilla Turner, The Telegraph.

The Telegraph


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