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Daily News Summary
19 January 2021

image Coronavirus: DfE requests updated advice amid concerns over its COVID-19 testing plan for schools
image Ofqual raises concerns over proposals for BTEC reforms
image Police launch fast-track recruitment schemes for school leavers

Coronavirus: DfE requests updated advice amid concerns over its COVID-19 testing plan for schools

 

Children's minister Nicky Ford told MPs yesterday that the Department for Education (DfE) has requested updated advice from NHS Test and Trace and Public Health England about its plan for daily COVID-19 testing in schools. By John Roberts, Tes.

Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, has called on the Government to pause the daily testing of COVID contacts in secondary schools, after it emerged these tests would not be taking place in primary schools. By John Roberts, Tes.

Early findings suggest the majority of schools using rapid lateral flow tests have not detected a single coronavirus case. By John Roberts, Tes .

Deenan Pillay, a professor at University College London and member of the Independent Sage group, has said teachers and school staff should be vaccinated as a "prerequisite for schools to go back". By Catherine Lough, Tes.

Speaking to The Guardian, three nursery teachers share their concerns about having to keep their facilities open during lockdown. By Jedidajah Otte.

New findings suggest 46 per cent of children who started school in 2020 were not "school ready" compared with 35 per cent in 2019, prompting concerns about the impact of COVID-related nursery closures. By Linda Geddes, The Guardian.

Education secretary Gavin Williamson has said that live remote lessons are the "best" form of teaching during lockdown, contradicting comments made by Ofsted's research head, Professor Daniel Mujis, last week. By Dave Speck, Tes.

Esther McVey, a Conservative MP and former cabinet minister, writes in The Times warning "the educational divide will continue to deepen day by day" unless steps are taken to improve access to online learning for pupils at home.

More than 250 national providers of "wraparound care" for children have signed a letter to chancellor Rishi Sunak warning the sector is at "imminent risk" of financial collapse. By Jeremy Wilson, The Telegraph.

First minister Nicola Sturgeon said yesterday that she is "not going to raise expectations about schools being back on February 1". By Mark McLaughlin, The Times.

Bruce Adamson, the children and young people's commissioner for Scotland, writes in The Times calling on the Scottish Government to do more to support children during the pandemic, 'paying particular attention to those in vulnerable situations'.

The Times reports Scottish ministers are negotiating with mobile phone providers to offer free internet access for disadvantaged children learning from home. By Kieran Andrews.

A survey conducted by The Prince's Trust has highlighted the "devastating toll" of the pandemic on young people's mental health and wellbeing, as findings suggest a quarter of people aged between 16 and 25 feel they are "unable to cope with life". By Jamie Johnson and Camilla Turner, The Telegraph.

Research from the University of Oxford has revealed the impact of lockdown on the mental wellbeing of parents and carers, with some feeling hopeless, finding it difficult to relax and being irritable. By Katherine Sellgren, BBC News.

Dr Rangan Chatterjee, a GP, offers advice to parents on how they can support their child's physical and mental wellbeing during lockdown. By Maria Lally, The Telegraph.

The Magic Breakfast food charity has pledged to mark its 20th anniversary by doubling the number of schools it works with, increasing its food provision to an additional 120,000 children. By Florence Snead, iNews.

 

Ofqual raises concerns over proposals for BTEC reforms

 

Ofqual has warned the Government's plans to remove funding for thousands of qualifications, such as BTECs, could limit student choice and lead to "market instability". By Billy Camden, Schools Week.

 
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Schools Week

Police launch fast-track recruitment schemes for school leavers

 

Police forces are launching fast-track schemes designed to encourage school leavers to become detectives, amid a national shortage of around 5,000 recruits. By Charles Hymas, The Telegraph.

 
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The Telegraph

 

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