How English pupils’ grades will be awarded to be announced in coronavirus catch-up plans

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The way that school grades will be awarded this summer is set to be announced tomorrow (Thursday).

The Education Secretary assured viewers of his Downing Street press conference on Wednesday that the Government is ‘putting our faith in teachers, not algorithms’, but said that the full plan would be unveiled in the House of Commons tomorrow.

Gavin Williamson took the opportunity to give his thanks to those who have stepped in to educate and care for children during the pandemic.

“You have been going above and beyond,” he told teachers, before thanking parents for their hard work in home schooling children, alongside deputy chief medical officer for England, Dr Jenny Harries.

He said that it is “time for children to be back in school, learning and playing with their friends”, and went on: “Tomorrow we’ll be setting out the details on how grades will be awarded this summer.”

He did hint that they would be “putting trust firmly in the hands of teachers,” adding: “There’s going to be no algorithms at all.”

The announcement on Wednesday revealed an extra £400 million of funding – on top of £300 million which he pledged in January – to help pupils make up lost learning time following months of school closures.

Summer provision will be introduced for pupils who need it the most – like incoming Year 7 pupils – as part of the recovery package.

One-to-one and small group tutoring schemes will also be expanded.

Mr Williamson said: “The latest data tells us that we are able to proceed with a full return of schools and colleges from Monday, March 8.”

Primary schools are set to return that day, older students can return at staggered dates.

“Many children are going to need longer-term support if they are going to make educational progress.

“This is why Sir Kevin Collins has been appointed, to address learning gaps as quickly and as comprehensively as possible,” he added.

“This isn’t just about more money for schools. This is investing in our children. This boost to learning will be assessed and evidence-based, and we’ll track the outcomes,” he said.



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