ASCL responds to EPI report on Covid education policies

09/10/2020
Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, comments on the Education Policy Institute (EPI) report, ‘Education policy responses across the UK to the pandemic’.
 
Commenting on the Education Policy Institute (EPI) report, ‘Education policy responses across the UK to the pandemic’, Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said:
 
“It is pretty damning that the executive chairman of the Education Policy Institute concludes that the governments of the UK nations should have done far better on education policy during the Covid crisis.
 
“Certainly, ASCL’s experience has been that schools have often felt that they have been left to swing in the wind without the support they need from government.
 
“We say that with particular reference to the Westminster government whose handling of education policy has been shambolic.
 
“Even now, we are not convinced it has fully grasped the level of need for laptops and internet connections to support the delivery of remote education to children from disadvantaged homes.
 
“And its flip-flopping over free school meal provision during holiday periods, and chaotic delivery of the voucher system, caused great uncertainty and concern for schools and struggling families at a time when they needed assurance.
 
“A lot of problems could have been avoided if the government had taken a more collaborative approach with the education profession, but schools have often first heard about government policies from briefings to the media.”