John Moore, Director, Renaissance

Lockdown has widened the attainment gap for disadvantaged students, says two-thirds of teachers, new research from @RenLearnUK found 

New research from Renaissance, which creates educational software tools to improve outcomes and accelerate learning, reveals the majority of Head Teachers and school teachers (63%) think lockdown has made the attainment gap greater.

Despite this, a third (33%) of teachers also feel their schools are unprepared to act on attainment differences.

The research asked over four hundred (443) senior school leaders, department heads and teachers about their experience of assessing and combatting the attainment gap as schools return to the classroom.

Despite the clear challenges of lockdown, over a third (38%) of teachers did not feel their school was prepared to measure attainment differences when returning to the classroom.

According to Renaissance, teachers must be able to identify the impact of time lost to learning during lockdown so they are able to make informed decisions on how best to effectively support their pupils in catching up by prioritising the most important skills. With disadvantaged children likely to be the ones who have suffered the most over the last few months - due to a lack of electronic devices and internet access - it’s even more important they are given the support they deserve to catch up with their peers.

The most popular methods teachers plan to use to measure the attainment gap are through teacher assessment (84%), regular assessment (71%) and assessment at the end of the first term and end of the academic year (50%).

In light of the potential learning loss due to Covid-19, Renaissance is offering free tools (Focus Skills™) to help teachers’ bridge pupils’ attainment gap. Focus Skills™ were developed alongside detailed Learning Progressions in partnership with the National Foundation for Educational Research. Collectively, they map pupils’ knowledge against the National Curriculum, which together with formative assessment can show teachers areas where gaps have formed in pupils’ learning.

Renaissance believes that teachers can use dedicated Focus Skills Workbooks, which are being made freely available to schools, to plan lessons that support pupils in learning the skills necessary for them to meet the curriculum requirements for their academic year group. These educational tools save teachers time and support them in creating tailored lesson plans, meaning pupils spend more time learning and are given more specific support for their developmental needs.

John Moore, Director, Renaissance said,

“Now more than ever, Renaissance is committed to working with School, Trust and MAT leaders to help make data and insights easy to find, understand and take action on - not just for assessment but to tailor teaching and planning and in order to motivate students. It’s worrying and unfair that disadvantaged children are likely to have had the gap between them and more privileged pupils increase due to no fault of their own. We want to reduce teacher workload by providing them with simple technology that tests, marks and analyses their pupils’ knowledge. With that information, they can focus on what they are really there for – to educate pupils, guide their learning development and plan tailored programmes.”

Natalie Perera, Executive Director, Education Policy Institute said,

“COVID has meant that children have lost several months of critical learning time. For the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children the impact of lost learning time is likely to be greater. We are pleased to work alongside Renaissance on this project. By developing a greater understanding of the impact of Covid-related disruptions on learning, and the teaching methods which support pupils to catch up, we will be better placed to identify strategies and interventions to mitigate against the impact of lost learning in cases of further or prolonged school closures.”

Christine Ivory, Assistant Headteacher at Grove Primary School in Wolverhampton said,

“Our teaching staff were all concerned about the impact of school closures on our pupils’ learning. We have a high proportion of disadvantaged pupils so it felt unfair that lockdown should hinder them more than their peers.

Each of our pupils completed a Renaissance Star test at the beginning of term which allowed us to identify the pupils who were the most affected by the lockdown and offer them further support. Using Focus Skills has helped our teachers to group students by ability which sets a framework to help them tackle any learning loss as efficiently as possible.”

Focus Skills™ have been turned into teacher workbooks that are freely available to schools to provide a roadmap for closing learning gaps, and can be used to support individual, group or class instruction.

About the research: Renaissance conducted online research with Primary and Secondary school senior leaders and subject leaders across the UK and Ireland during 21st September – 5th October 2020. There were 443 respondents to the survey which consisted mainly of Head Teachers (62%), Deputy/Department Heads (12%) and Teachers (11%).

You may also be interested in these articles:

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Advertisers

Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In May 2020, FE News had over 120,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.

Podcasts

We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.

Events

FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page