Last updated: 21 April 2020
Free school meals
Children who are eligible for free school meals will continue to be provided with food during the current period of school closures.
Schools are doing this in a variety of ways and have contacted parents and carers directly to confirm the method that applies to them. Some will continue to prepare meals or food parcels that can be delivered to or collected by families, and others will be using the Government’s voucher scheme.
If you need further information please contact your child’s school directly.
If your situation has changed and you think your child may now be eligible for free school meals, please find more information here.
Many children are currently at home as a result of school closures due to the Coronavirus, or due to self-isolating. If you need some inspiration about what online resources are available, the Education Otherwise website lists a wide range of resources that have been recommended by families who have chosen to electively home educate their children.
In response to a significant number of requests for advice, Education Otherwise have produced a guidance document for families currently endeavouring to home educate their children.
Summer exams and grades
The Government has announced that this summer’s exam series, including A Levels, GCSEs and other qualifications, have been cancelled. The Government has set out its approach to ensuring that affected students can move on to the next stage of their lives, which will include awarding grades based on work already completed and providing an option for students to sit exams early in the academic year should they wish to do so.
Home educated students
Ofqual have issued guidance relating to Summer 2020 grades for GCSE, AS and A level, Extended Project Qualification and Advanced Extension Award in maths.
How will this affect private candidates and home educated students?
We know that private candidates are anxious to know how these arrangements apply to them. Where centres have accepted entries from private candidates (students who they have not taught themselves, because they have been home-schooled, following distance-learning programmes or studying independently) those students should be included where the Head of Centre is confident that they and their staff have seen sufficient evidence of the student’s achievement to make an objective judgement. We are urgently exploring whether there are alternative options for those students who do not have an existing relationship with a centre and who need results this summer for progression purposes but unfortunately this is unlikely to be possible for all external candidates, some of whom may instead need to take exams in the autumn to get their grades.
We appreciate that this is a matter of real concern to private candidates and will provide an update as soon as possible. We have asked organisations that represent higher and further education providers to consider the steps that providers could take when making admissions decisions this summer for any private candidates who do not receive a grade. They have told us that they believe that institutions will consider a range of other evidence and information for these students to allow them to progress wherever possible.