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Daily News Summary
7 January 2021

Exams 2021: Teachers prepare to set internal tests in place of exams
Coronavirus: Health secretary acknowledges "very strong case" for teachers to be prioritised for the vaccine
Spotlight On: Magdalen College School’s laptop fundraising campaign

Exams 2021: Teachers prepare to set internal tests in place of exams


The Times reports on some of the plans schools have for their own internal assessments, following the cancellation of GCSE and A-level exams. By Nicola Woolcock. The article quotes several heads of schools in membership of the ISC's constituent associations.

Colin Bell, the CEO of the Council of British International Schools, has said the international school sector is seeking clarity on how the cancellation of GCSE and A-level exams will affect overseas schools with pupils scheduled to sit British exams in the summer. By Dan Worth, Tes.

Jonathan Mounstevens, deputy headteacher at Beaumont School, St Albans, writes in The Telegraph offering advice to pupils worried about their mock exams this year.

Magnus Bashaarat, head of Bedales School, writes to The Times criticising the U-turn on this year's exams.

Lee Elliot Major, professor of social mobility at the University of Exeter, writes in The Guardian expressing concern over the impact of cancelled exams on disadvantaged pupils.


Coronavirus: Health secretary acknowledges "very strong case" for teachers to be prioritised for the vaccine


Health secretary Matt Hancock has said teachers have "a very strong case" to be prioritised for the COVID-19 vaccine once the most vulnerable groups in society have been inoculated. By Camilla Turner and Harry Yorke, The Telegraph.

Schools Week reports a number of schools are offering up their sites to be used as vaccination centres during widespread closures. By James Carr.

Nadhim Zahawi, the vaccine minister, has defended the decision to keep nurseries open, saying they present "very little risk" in terms of coronavirus transmission. BBC News.

Education secretary Gavin Williamson has said teachers will be expected to deliver a set daily number of hours of remote education during the lockdown. He added that Ofsted will have the power to inspect schools' home learning provision "where it has serious concerns about the quality of remote education being provided". By Zoe Tidman, The Independent.

Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, has said the Government should "provide schools and colleges with further catch-up funding in light of the latest restrictions on opening". By Amy Gibbons, Tes.

Anne Longfield, the children's commissioner for England, writes in The Times calling for a strategy to ensure vulnerable children take up their places in school.

According to The Guardian, schools across England are urging parents to be "completely honest" about their key worker status amid a surge in requests for school places. By Helen Pidd, Sally Weale and Maya Wolfe-Robinson. An anonymous primary headteacher writes in the paper expressing concern over the potential risks associated with the increase of pupils eligible for a school place.

Gavin Williamson has said the Government "will ensure a national voucher scheme is in place" for pupils eligible for free school meals, if their school is unable to provide food parcels or meals to them at home. By Freddie Whittaker, Schools Week.

The Telegraph reports the Government has pledged to prioritise the return of grassroots sport when lockdown measures are eased. By Jeremy Wilson, Ben Rumsby and Tom Morgan.


Spotlight On: Magdalen College School’s laptop fundraising campaign


Susannah Baker, development director at Magdalen College School, Oxford, explains how the school has provided laptops and internet access for pupils from three local primary schools, in a bid to tackle digital poverty exacerbated by the pandemic. The blog marks the first instalment of the ISC's 'Spotlight On' series in 2021.

If your school has a partnership project or outreach initiative you would like us to share as part of the 'Spotlight On' series, please email



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