Absence in schools is worrying, but it doesn't have to mean an absence of education

The Department for Education has published attendance in education and early years setting during the coronavirus outbreak – revealing that the number of pupils self-isolating has doubled this week. With Covid cases continually on the rise, Simon Carter, Director at RM Education, explains why physical absence doesn’t have to mean the absence of learning – and why we should be celebrating teachers at this difficult time.

“With Covid cases on the rise and a second lockdown well underway, it should come as no surprise that the number of Primary and Secondary School pupils self-isolating has doubled this week. Schools across England are suffering increased disruption as a result of the pandemic and remote learning packs have become a lifeline for parents, students and teachers who are increasingly under pressure.
 
“After all, physical absence doesn’t have to lead to the absence of education anymore – the last year has proven that. Teachers are better prepared than they have ever been to adapt to changes in the education sector. And the time is now to put that preparation into action; from digital assessments, to keeping in touch with pupils via Zoom, Google Classroom and Microsoft Teams, and even creating new and digital-friendly teaching materials.
 
“As we count down to the Christmas break one thing is for sure: the resilience of our teachers, parents and pupils in the face of unprecedented challenges is something to be celebrated. And, as remote learning becomes the norm, we all have a part to play in steadying the ship and giving schools the support they need to end the year on a high.”

 
18/11/2020