Department for education

The cost of school closures

How can ministers stop one of the worst legacies of the pandemic being a generation of children left behind after a year out of the classroom? This week, when Boris Johnson confirmed 8 March as the earliest schools will return, he also announced money to help pupils catch up and a long-term plan for education. There’s a glimpse of the scale of the task facing the government as it develops a long-term plan in this report from the Education Endowment Foundation, which found not only a significant fall in attainment for primary age pupils as a result of the disruption to the school year, but also a ‘large and concerning

The unending confusion at the Department for Education

It used to be the case that the only things that were certain in life were death and taxes. To that list we can now add unending turmoil and confusion at the Department for Education. Today Gavin Williamson U-turned on the government’s previous pledge to keep schools open, announcing that a number of schools in Covid ‘hotspots’ would not be going back as planned next week. Primaries in some areas – including a slightly random patchwork of London boroughs – will not reopen next week. Those in lower tiers and some Tier 4 areas will start term as planned. The following week, years 11 and 13 will return to secondary