Coronavirus Information 4th December 2020

4th December 2020

This is your daily email to keep you updated on the government’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Get help with remote education service

The Get help with remote education service helps teachers and leaders find the guidance and support they need to educate pupils remotely following the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19). Schools can find useful resources and examples of good teaching practice (including lesson plans and webinars from schools), as well as guidance on remote education expectations, duties and safeguarding. Teachers and leaders can also find the financial and technical support available to them.

2020 Global Teacher Prize announced

We would like to congratulate Dr Jamie Frost, maths lead at Tiffin School in Kingston-upon-Thames, who was shortlisted for the 2020 Global Teacher prize and has won the COVID hero award, a special recognition award for one teacher who has gone above and beyond to keep young people learning during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Dr Frost was nominated after his tuition website went viral, helping millions of pupils in the UK and around the world to continue their studies at home.

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said:

I would like to send my warmest congratulations and thanks to Jamie for his outstanding innovation and dedication in helping pupils and fellow teachers around the world. It is a truly remarkable story, and I am pleased he is receiving the worldwide recognition he thoroughly deserves.

This is also another moment I would like to take to thank teachers and support staff in all schools and colleges for what they have done for our children this year, and their extraordinary hard work in the face of unprecedented circumstances.

Changes to 2021 national curriculum assessments

We recognise the challenges that primary schools are facing in light of the ongoing disruption caused by coronavirus (COVID-19). Our approach to the 2021 national curriculum assessments will focus on the most important summer assessments for schools, pupils and parents.

For 2021, we have removed:

  •          all key stage 1 (KS1) tests
  •          the key stage 2 (KS2) English grammar, punctuation and spelling test
  •          the requirement to make and report teacher assessment judgements for science at KS1 and KS2

This means that the following statutory assessments will continue in 2021:

  •          the phonics screening check for year 1 pupils (and year 2 pupils who have not met the expected standard previously)
  •          KS2 English reading and mathematics tests
  •          KS1 and KS2 teacher assessment (excluding science)

For further details about these changes, we have published the following guidance:

Remote education webinars – Ark English Mastery

The remote education webinars are school-led webinars to help share good practice. Ark English Mastery will be hosting a series of webinars for curriculum and subject leaders on making the curriculum work remotely. These webinars will focus on some of the difficult decisions curriculum and subject leaders have had to make this year to maintain curriculum integrity.

You can register to attend via Zoom on:

If you are unable to attend, a recording of the webinar will be available to watch after the live event through the Department for Education YouTube channel.

The information below has not changed since our last update

Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline

The Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline is available to answer questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) relating to education settings and children’s social care.

Please listen carefully to all of the available options before selecting the most appropriate option for your nursery, school, college or university.

Please select option 1 or 2 if you require specific advice on the action to take to respond to a positive case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in your setting. This option will take you through to a dedicated team of NHS Business Services Authority advisors who will work through a risk assessment with you to identify close contacts and will inform you what action is needed based on the latest public health advice.

Please select option 3 or 4 for any other questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) relating to education settings and children’s social care.

Phone: 0800 046 8687
Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm
Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm

Look up your unique organisation number (UON)

If you have not received your unique organisation number (UON) for ordering new coronavirus (COVID-19) test kits you can look it up using your unique reference number (URN) or your UK provider reference number (UKPRN) or by calling the Test and Trace helpdesk on 119.

Department for Education guidance

Our guidance to support education providers, local authorities and parents during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak can be accessed using the links below: