COVID-19: Education Recovery Plan Criticised as Inadequate Amid Reported Whitehall Squabbles Over Cost

Source: SKY News

A COVID rescue plan to help children in England catch up on lost lessons, costing £1.4bn, is being unveiled by the government. But plans to add half an hour to the school day, extending it from 8 am to 5 pm or 6 pm, have been postponed after a reported Whitehall row over the cost.

As part of the recovery package, 17 and 18-year-old students will be given the option to repeat their final year if they have been badly affected by COVID.

But lengthening the school day or shortening the summer holiday is now under review as Sir Kevan battles against the Treasury for an estimated £15bn to fund his full plans, with Chancellor Rishi Sunak said to be “pushing back against them” because of the massive cost.

The £1.4bn package announced by Mr Williamson includes £1bn to support up to six million 15-hour tutoring courses for disadvantaged children, as well as expanding 16-19 tuition, targeting key subjects such as maths and English.

And £400m will help give early years practitioners and 500,000 school teachers across the country training and support, and schools and colleges will be funded to give some Year 13 students the option to repeat their final year.


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