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Update on School Operations

We partner with School and Academy Trust sector bodies The Confederation of School Trusts (CST)Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) and The Trust NetworkThey continue to advocate hard on behalf of schools and trusts and are offering guidance and advice on operational issues.

Some key items are highlighted below.

School-led tutoring and the National Tutoring Programme

The final instalment of the school-led tutoring funding, including a 16 percent increase, will be paid to academies on 9 May. In an email to schools on Friday, the DfE reminds leaders that any funding not utilised by the end of August will need to be returned to the department.

The DfE has adjusted the access rights to the individual tutoring package which means that teachers or tutors can move a new pupil into an incomplete tutoring session, to ensure the full 15 hours has been achieved, and funding can be claimed.

The DfE’s school-led tutoring guidance and tracker tool contains details for on the expectations and conditions attached to school-led tutoring funding.

DfE: Sustainability and climate change strategy

Following the publication of the draft climate change strategy in November, the Department yesterday released Sustainability and climate change: A strategy for the education and children’s services systems. Much of the draft strategy remains. Key announcements include:

  • A new GCSE in natural history to be introduced by September 2025, which will “enable young people to explore the world by learning about organisms and environments, environmental and sustainability issues, and gain a deeper knowledge of the natural world around them”.
  • From 2022, a climate literacy survey will be carried out annually to benchmark progress in improving climate knowledge of school leavers.
  • Confirmed rollout of carbon literacy training to support at least one sustainability lead, with training to support development of climate action plans and increase climate resilience.
  • Confirmed rollout of ultra-low carbon education buildings, built via the Gen Zero Platform demonstrated at COP-26, and published risk assessment of flood, overheating and water scarcity of the education estate, biodiversity of the education estate, and on-site emissions from the education estate all baselined by 2024 with national targets published from 2025.
  • Confirmed increase of biodiversity in school estates through the National Education Nature Park, with free high-quality resources to be provided as part of the Nature Hub Park.
  • A Climate Leaders Awards for to celebrate and recognise the work of children and young people to improve their environment.

At Barker we support several clients with their energy strategy.  You can view our webinar for CST on how to create your Trusts’ energy strategy HERE 

Minimum expectation on length of the school week: information note

The DfE also published an information note on minimum expectations on the length of the school week, providing details on the expectation that state-funded mainstream schools should deliver a school week of at least 32.5 hours by September 2023.

From September 2022, all state-funded schools are expected to publish their opening times on their school website.

  • From spring 2023, all state-funded schools are expected to submit the length of their school week via the spring collection of the school census.
  • By September 2023 at the latest, all state-funded, mainstream schools will be expected to provide a compulsory school week of at least 32.5 hours, but this expectation does not apply to  early years and 16-19 education (including school sixth forms) or specialist settings (special schools and alternative provision).

The 32.5 hour minimum includes breaks and lunch times as well as teaching time and any extra-curricular activities that all pupils are expected to attend. It does not include optional before or after school provision.

Trust Capacity Fund

Applications are now open for Trust Capacity Fund 2022 to 2023. Trusts have until 30 June 2022 to apply. Updated applicant guidance, eligibility checkers and application form have been published.

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