Teachers to run 'summer school camps' in £700m catch-up plan

Camilla Turner
·2-min read
Headteachers will be given £200 million to run face-to-face teaching over the holidays as part of a major Government catch-up plan -  Yui Mok/PA
Headteachers will be given £200 million to run face-to-face teaching over the holidays as part of a major Government catch-up plan - Yui Mok/PA

Ministers have announced new funding for summer schools targeting incoming Year Seven students.

Headteachers will be given £200 million to run face-to-face teaching over the holidays as part of a major Government catch-up plan.

The "summer camps" should initially target pupils who are between the end of primary school and the beginning of secondary school, the Department for Education (DfE) said.

Another £200 million will be spent on tutoring, with £300 million on a "recovery premium" which schools can use to help the most disadvantaged pupils get up to speed.

Sir Kevan Collins, appointed earlier this year to oversee catch-up plans, said: "We know that ensuring all children and young people can make up for lost learning will be a longer-term challenge, and the range of measures announced today are an important next step."

Parents face further homeschooling woe as headteachers warn that it could be two weeks before secondary pupils are all tested and back in the classroom full-time.

The mass testing of secondary pupils in the space of a week is "not going to happen", according to Jules White, the head of Tanbridge House School in Horsham, West Sussex, and the founder of Worth Less?, a network of around 2,000 school leaders.

Mr White said headteachers around the country would be writing to parents this week to explain the arrangements for the return of pupils.

While the DfE said secondaries could phase the return of pupils over a week to allow for the mass testing programme, Mr White said that the "reality" was that most would need a fortnight.

Secondary school students will be asked to take four lateral flow tests during the first two weeks of term, three of which will take place at school and one at home. Students will be allowed to continue coming to school as long as their tests are negative, but will be asked to go home and isolate if they have a positive result.

A DfE spokesman said: "We expect schools will follow our guidance."