Early details for summer schools unveiled

Funding pressures for schools hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic has been raised by Suffolk education and health leaders.

The DfE has outlined recovery measures for schools - Credit: ThinkStock

School pupils moving from primary into secondary school in 2021 are set to be the target for summer school recovery work, according to Suffolk education insiders.

The Department for Education has begun mapping out measures to help pupils whose schooling has been disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic, with a host of measures.

A £302million national recovery premium means Suffolk primaries will on average get £6,000 each, while secondaries receive around £22,000 for recovery activities, to be spent in ways they see fit.

That could be used to fund overtime for teachers, bring in external assistants for targeted work or on supplies.

£200m has also been set aside nationally for secondary schools to deliver summer schools, with a suggested focus on enhancing transition for those leaving Year 6 this summer and heading to Year 7 in September.

Suffolk County Council assistant director for education and learning, Adrian Orr, said students who

Suffolk County Council assistant director for education and learning, Adrian Orr - Credit: Suffolk County Council

Adrian Orr, Suffolk County Council's assistant director for education and learning, said: "There is money set aside for summer schools but we haven’t got all the detail.

"The summer schools will be a mix of recovery and enrichment activities.

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"As far as we know at the moment, it is only secondary schools that will be able to draw down funding with a suggested focus on the new Year 7s, the young people coming up from primary. 

"Although it doesn’t say it, it looks like it is enhanced transition from primary to secondary.

"I think the sector feel they would probably like to do something with groups within the school too but here is a real balancing act because young people need a break as well."

Suffolk County Council is hoping it will also be able to deliver some of its usual summer enrichment activities such as arts, science or sports clubs, usually held over four weeks.

Other government measures outlined include online resources being made available through the summer, an accelerator fund for schools to bid for a share of on specific recovery projects, and the appointment of a recovery lead.

"The sense across the profession is that we need a long term recovery plan that helps all young people achieve the key learning milestones they need to achieve, and that will be different for different young people," Mr Orr said. 

"Four weeks in the summer is not going to address all that has happened.

"There will be some young people who have thrived in this lockdown, others that have done okay, and there will be others that need significant support.

"We have to see this as a longer term endeavour."

More details on potential summer schools are set to be finalised over the coming weeks and months.