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ISC Daily News Summary

ISC Daily News Summary 29 July 2020

Coronavirus: "Detailed" plan for reopening schools in September due this week

Child welfare

Education secretary Gavin Williamson has promised to share a "detailed" plan by the end of the week outlining how the Government intends to bring all pupils back to school in September. By John Dickens, Schools Week. Scientific advisers have reportedly warned ministers that secondary schools will not be able to reopen fully in September unless people continue to follow social distancing rules. SAGE documents published yesterday suggest an effective contact-tracing system is needed to ensure the return of all primary school children does not push the rate of infection above the level of 1. By Chris Smyth, Tom Ball and Nicola Woolcock, The Times.

The Mail on Sunday reports Boris Johnson has said it will be compulsory for parents to send their children back to school in September. By Glen Owen and Nick Craven. The Telegraph reports Gavin Williamson has told MPs he will ensure all children return to school in September "come what may". By Camilla Turner.

The Institute for Global Change has said a three-week coronavirus screening programme should be rolled out in schools to speed up the return of all pupils and boost confidence levels among parents and teachers. By Paul Nuki, The Telegraph.

The Parents and Teachers for Excellence education policy group has called for schools to reopen in August and provide catch-up sessions on Saturdays. By Nick Craven, The Mail on Sunday.

Christopher King, chief executive of the Independent Association of Prep Schools, has written to Gavin Williamson expressing his dismay at the Government's "reluctance to accept help" from independent schools, which are offering to run catch-up summer courses for children in their local communities. By Camilla Turner, The Telegraph.

Dame Alison Peacock, chief executive of the Chartered College of Teaching, has warned teachers should not be "guilt-tripped" into delivering catch-up programmes over summer. By Freddie Whittaker, Schools Week.

Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, has suggested some headteachers may use a loophole in the law to avoid issuing fines to parents who refuse to send their children back to school in September. By Bill Gardner, The Telegraph.

An article in Tes explores how some schools are preparing for next year's GCSE exams. By Zofia Niemtus. The article quotes Karen Marshall, head of science at The Ladies' College. Geoff Barton has suggested some elements of assessment in 2021 could be brought forward to earlier in the year. By Freddie Whittaker, Schools Week.

Paediatricians have warned children and the wider population could be at risk of diseases such as measles and meningitis, after figures revealed vaccinations dropped by nearly 20 per cent in the first three weeks of lockdown. By Sarah Knapton, The Telegraph.

An article in The Sunday Times explores the impact lockdown has had on childhood obesity levels in Britain. By Caroline Wheeler, Rosamund Urwin, Tom Calver and Sian Griffiths.

Kate Green appointed as new shadow education secretary

Education policy

Labour MP Kate Green has replaced Rebecca Long-Bailey as Sir Keir Starmer's shadow education secretary. BBC News. An article in Schools Week details some key facts about Kate Green. By Freddie Whittaker.

ISC blog: No more snow days

ISC blog

Andy Perryer, digital learning adviser for Cognita, reflects on how teachers and pupils have embraced online learning during the pandemic.

PM pledges £1bn for major school building projects

Education policy

Prime minister Boris Johnson has promised £1 billion in funding for 50 school building projects, along with a further £560 million for school upgrades and repairs. By Sean Coughlan, BBC News.

'Branded school uniforms are under threat'

Education policy

Andrew Lewer, Conservative MP for Northampton South and chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Independent Education, writes in The Express voicing his concerns about proposals to scrap branded uniforms in schools.

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