UK: Flagship summer schools programme opens today to help students recover lost learning
Summer schools will be targeted at children who suffered the most disruption during the last year
Schools in England can now register to offer a summer school to help children recover learning they have lost during the pandemic
Schools will be encouraged to bid for a share of £200 million in government funding to design summer schools for students who have experienced the most disruption.
Incoming Year 7 students will predominantly be encouraged to get involved, to help them navigate the important transition between primary and secondary school following a year of disrupted learning.
Summer schools will include a variety of activities from group activities such as sports to mental health support and academic catch up such as maths and English lessons.
Summer schools are one part of £1.7 billion already invested by the government in ambitious catch-up activity over the next year, including high quality tutoring.
A longer-term plan to help all students recover from the impact of the pandemic is currently under development, led by Education Recovery Commissioner Sir Kevan Collins.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said:
Our resilient kids are now back in the classroom, seeing their friends and having all of the benefits that being in school brings. But we know that time out of school necessary to control the pandemic has had an impact on the learning of pupils right across the country. Additional support this summer – on top of the National Tutoring programme and additional funding for schools – will help boost learning and wellbeing plus help prepare those pupils about to start secondary schools.
We’re supporting schools to plan their summer provision as early as possible, and making sure parents and pupils themselves have the notice they need to plan their own summers.
I am confident that this summer of enrichment and engagement in academic work will be a great success, tailored to local needs by the wonderful heads and teachers who best understand the needs of their students.
Schools can sign up via an online form on GOV.uk to confirm their plans, with flexibility for schools to target funding at other groups of students dependent on their local circumstances.
Parents should expect to hear from their schools over the course of May and June as they progress with their planning, but it remains at the discretion of schools which students they target their summer school offer towards.
The government anticipates that a two week summer school will give students an opportunity to make up some lost academic ground before they start a new school.
Summer schools should also offer an opportunity for schools to support students’ wellbeing, and schools should include activities such as team games, music, drama or sports activities, in their plans.
Schools will need to determine how best to use the funding and staff the scheme to ensure that the extra time is used effectively.