Just over a tenth of East Riding children in school before holidays, new figures reveal

A snapshot school survey carried out by the Government has revealed that just over a tenth of the East Riding of Yorkshire pupils were in class on one day just before the summer holidays.

Wednesday, 12th August 2020, 2:00 pm
A snapshot school survey carried out by the Government has revealed that just over a tenth of the East Riding of Yorkshire pupils were in class on one day just before the summer holidays.

The Education Policy Institute (EPI) said the figures, which show the vast majority of pupils across England were absent, confirm children have suffered “significant learning loss” during the coronavirus lockdown.

Since asking schools to close on March 20 to all but vulnerable children and those of critical workers, the Department of Education conducted a weekly survey of schools, colleges and nurseries to track attendance rates.

The final survey on July 16 shows 73% of schools were open in the East Riding of Yorkshire with 12% of the area’s children present. The area had a lower attendance than the national rate for England of 16%

The EPI think tank said the most disadvantaged pupils are likely to have been hit the hardest.

Natalie Perera, executive director and head of research at the organisation, said getting students back into the classroom in September is vital, but comes with a number of risks.

She added: “Schools will have gained experience from having some pupils present since March, but the reality is the situation next month will be vastly different to what we have seen so far, with an array of additional challenges.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he had “no doubt” that schools would be able to re-open, but stressed the need for discipline to prevent the spread of the virus.