Secondary schools in England will be asked to consider delivering face-to-face summer schools as part of efforts to help pupils catch up. An extra £420m in funding has been announced, along with £300m announced for catch-up projects in January. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the money will help ensure "no child is left behind" due to the pandemic. Teachers, experts and unions called the money a "good start" - but warned about overwhelming pupils and teachers.
The prime minister has confirmed all pupils will return to classrooms from 8 March as part of the first step of a roadmap for easing England's lockdown.
National restrictions since last March have led many pupils to lose around half a school year in face-to-face learning, the government said.
Schools will have the option to run summer classes for pupils who need it most, potentially starting with those who will be moving up to Year 7 at secondary school this year.But the government says it will be up to schools to decide how and if they run summer schools, how long they will be, and which pupils will be invited to attend.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said "we're giving schools the option to be able to draw down on this funding".
He said the average primary school will also receive around £6,000 in extra money, with the average secondary school getting around £22,000 extra in recovery premium payments.Speaking on BBC Breakfast, he said it was up to head teachers to decide how to use the money - it could be used, for example to pay teachers for overtime to do extra teaching.Last year, Mr Johnson announced a £1bn catch-up fund for England, and later appointed Sir Kevan Collins as education recovery commissioner.In Scotland, the administration has promised £140m in funding to help disadvantaged pupils. Tens of millions of pounds have also been put into catch-up schemes in Wales and Northern Ireland.(BBC)