Millions of children are receiving distance education and students will no longer take their 2021 exams due to the sharp increase COVID-19[feminine[feminine case.
Today, a survey of over 1,000 school principals conducted by the campaign group Worth Less? And shared with Sophy Ridge on Sunday, shows that these last minute decisions have severely eroded confidence in the government.
In the survey, 52% of school leaders said they did not trust DfE decision-making, and 41% “hardly”. Only 6% said they were “somewhat confident”, and only 1% said they were confident.
Jules White, principal of Tanbridge House Secondary School in Horsham, and leader of Worth Less? campaign, said: “Every director has sympathy for the government in the pandemic, but the inconsistent message, turn after turn, has been very difficult to handle.
“Goal messages seem to change every five minutes, we waste time, resources and energy, and most importantly kids and parents don’t get a consistent message either.
He added: “Just before Christmas schools which were considering closing due to public health risks, were threatened with legal action.
“Then over the Christmas season, myself and other directors really took a break in trying to put in place plans for mass testing, which were pretty flawed at the start.
“Then, right before we go home, we have to get the kids to learn online.
“It’s just confusing and almost impossible to handle. ”
Earlier this month, Boris Johnson assured the public that there was no need to close schools, saying “there is no doubt in my mind that schools are safe”, before going back and shutting them down in a speech announcing the third national lockout.
Another 62% of those polled said they believe teachers should be moved higher in the immunization schedule to help schools reopen.
The government has previously said teachers will not be given priority. Although on Thursday Health Secretary Matt Hancock told MPs teachers had a “good case” to be included in the next stage of prioritization of vaccine deployment.
The government also announced this week that exams would be dropped in 2021 and replaced by teacher evaluation.
The survey showed that most teachers agreed with the decision – 91% of chefs saying it was right to cancel exams.
But an overwhelming majority also said the government should have announced full alternative plans at the same time.
An overwhelming majority of 92% said: “Comprehensive contingency plans for alternative grading systems should have already been established by the Department of Education. ”
A DfE spokesperson told Sky News: “We know these are tough times for schools and students.
“This is why we are launching a consultation with Ofqual next week on the best options for exam alternatives, to ensure that every young person gets a fair grade for their work.
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“Grades will be based on teacher assessment and support will be provided to ensure that grades are assigned in a consistent and fair manner.
“Every major public health decision we have made has been guided by the best scientific and medical advice, and we are working to ensure the best possible outcomes for schools and students. ”
Watch the full report, including talks with Chief Ofqual and Health Secretary Matt Hancock, on Sophy Ridge Sunday from 8:30 am today