Helping pupils to catch up on the time they spent out of the classroom is important to make sure the long lasting effects of the pandemic are minimised. That’s why we have launched a £1 billion Covid catch up package that is made up of a £650m catch up premium to help schools support all pupils, and a £350m National Tutoring Programme for disadvantaged students aged 5 to 16.
Headteachers and school leaders are best placed to make decisions about their pupils and which of them need the most support to catch up on time out of the classroom, which is why they will have the flexibility to decide how to spend funding from our Covid Catch up premium to address their best interests
On Tuesday, 8 September, The Sun reported comments made at Monday’s Education Questions about catch-up provision for pupils who have lost time in learning. Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: "There are so many different interventions that can really deliver significant results in terms of helping youngsters catch up on the learning that they have lost." He mentioned extending the school day and classes on Saturdays as being among the options school leaders can explore.
Guidance from the Education Endowment Foundation is available to advise schools on the best approaches to use – including whether to provide Saturday classes or after-school support is appropriate. This sets out that such provision should be supported by both parents and staff to be successful. It is one of a variety of approaches to tackling lost learning that schools could consider using, among others with strong existing evidence bases.
Our £1 billion Covid catch up package will tackle the impact of lost teaching time as a result of the pandemic, which includes a £650m catch up premium to help schools support all pupils, and a £350m National Tutoring Programme for disadvantaged students aged 5 to 16.