Home Education: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 15th June 2020.

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Photo of Julian Sturdy Julian Sturdy Conservative, York Outer

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment his Department has made of participation levels in the home learning curriculum set by schools during the covid-19 lockdown.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

The Department is continuing to assess the impact of the potential effect of school closure on children and young people’s education attainment. We are working closely with schools and nurseries, sector organisations, international institutions and across Government to understand the risks to education attainment and wellbeing, and identify how best to help children and young people make up for the time spent out of school.

It is up to each school to determine how to deliver education to its pupils and whether and how to monitor participation. We recognise that many schools have already shared resources – both online and printed resources – for children who are at home, and we are committed to ensuring that all children at home can continue to learn remotely in a number of ways during these very difficult circumstances.

We are supporting sector-led initiatives such as the Oak National Academy – a new enterprise which has been created by 40 teachers from schools across England. It will provide 180 video lessons for free each week, across a broad range of subjects, for every year group from Reception through to year 10. By 24 May, over 2.3 million users had visited the Oak Academy site and over 10.7 million lessons had been accessed.

Additionally, the Government has committed over £100 million to boost remote education, including by providing devices and internet access for those who need it most, ensuring every school that wants it has access to free, expert technical support to get set up on Google for Education or Microsoft’s Office 365 Education, and offering peer support from schools and colleges leading the way with the use of education technology.

These are rapidly developing circumstances; we continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

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