ASCL comment on pandemic learning loss research

29/10/2021
Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, comments on the research published by the Department for Education on learning loss experienced by pupils as a result of the Covid pandemic. 
 
Commenting on the research published by the Department for Education on learning loss experienced by pupils as a result of the Covid pandemic, Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said:
 
“This research provides further evidence of the scale of learning loss experienced by pupils as a result of the Covid pandemic, and in particular the impact on disadvantaged pupils who have clearly suffered the most. Government funding for education recovery to help pupils catch-up is welcome, including the announcements in Wednesday’s Budget, but does not go far enough in terms of scale or ambition. These children have suffered the greatest educational disruption since the Second World War and they need and deserve a far better recovery package.
 
“The research also finds that a key factor affecting learning loss may be the amount of time pupils were absent from school during periods when schools were fully open. Unfortunately, high levels of Covid-related absence continue this term, and it is therefore absolutely essential that more is done to reduce this disruption. The government must put more effort into rolling out the vaccination programme for 12 to 15-years-olds, encouraging twice-weekly home testing among eligible pupils, and it should make funding available for ventilation systems in schools and colleges.”