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ISC Daily News Summary

ISC Daily News Summary 15 October 2020

Coronavirus: Half-term circuit breaker lockdown now 'too late to work'

General education

Graham Medley, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), has claimed ministers have not acted quickly enough for a circuit breaker lockdown to be fully effective when schools break up for half-term. By Rhys Blakely and Tom Whipple, The Times.

Outdoor education operators have warned half of their centres face closure due to the pandemic, with residential school trips still banned under coronavirus guidelines. By Camilla Tominey, The Telegraph.

A report from the Edtech Advisory Forum has urged MPs to ensure initial teacher training (ITT) courses train new teachers in remote learning. By Amy Gibbons, Tes.

The Department for Education has said a decision on pausing in-person university lectures will be made "shortly". BBC News.

As part of Marcus Rashford's child poverty campaign, a petition has been launched calling for free school meals to be available for every child from a household on Universal Credit or equivalent. By Hannah Richardson, BBC News.

The Scottish Secondary Teachers’ Association has said all parents evenings should be cancelled due to the risk of coronavirus being spread at in-person meetings and the danger of cyberattacks if they are held digitally. By Sarah Ward, The Times.

Exams 2021: Heads raise concerns over unanswered questions about next year's exams


Independent school headteachers have voiced their concerns about the ongoing wait to find out whether there will be further changes to next year’s exams. By Jo Golding, IE Today. The article quotes Shaun Fenton, headmaster of Reigate Grammar School, Vicky Bingham, head of South Hampstead High School, and Irfan Latif, principal of DLD College London.

'How taking exams out of the equation would impact school choice'


Leah Hardy writes in The Telegraph considering "whether it is time not to just mothball next summer's exams but also GCSEs in perpetuity". The article quotes Alistair McConville, director of learning and innovation at Bedales School.

'Using gap year students as GCSE tutors is a recipe for success'


Anne Haig Smith, director, applied learning foundation at Activate Learning, discusses the benefits of having gap year students deliver one-to-one or small group support to GCSE pupils. Tes. The article references partnership work carried out by Magdalen College School.

New school staff wellbeing study reveals issues with pay and workload

Recruitment and retention

Findings from a Staff Pulse wellbeing tool, which has been created by Tes, reveal less than half of school staff are happy with their pay or workload. By John Roberts.

Universities devise plan "to tackle foreign interference"

Higher education

Vice-chancellors and officials have drawn up a plan "to tackle foreign interference in British universities". By Nicola Woolcock, Charlie Parker and Fiona Hamilton.

Scottish teen named a winner in Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award

And finally

BBC News reports on Scottish teenager Anna Gilmore Heezen, a 17-year-old sixth form pupil at Kilgraston School, who has won a top prize in a worldwide poetry competition. The article quotes Dorothy MacGinty, headteacher at the school.

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