• Williamson wants whole-class 'bubbles' from September

    The government will look into expanding “bubbles” in schools to include whole classes so all pupils can return in September. Gavin Williamson delivered today’s Downing Street press briefing, and fielded a number of questions about the government’s plans for the reopening of schools in the next academic year. Boris Johnson, the prime minister, said earlier

    17.49 Jun. 19th, 2020 | News

  • Williamson backs national online tutoring pilot

    The government has backed a national online tutoring pilot that will see hundreds of disadvantaged pupils receive free tuition from university undergraduates, but it will reach fewer youngsters than originally hoped. Schools Week revealed last month that four education charities were in talks with ministers about plans to test whether one-on-one tutoring could help narrow

    0.01 Jun. 3rd, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: 50% oppose back-to-school plans as trust in government slumps

    The government’s plan for the wider reopening of schools from today is opposed by half of Britons, a new survey shows. It comes as headteachers estimate between 40 to 70 per cent of eligible pupils have returned to school today, while education secretary Gavin Williamson told schools there is “no reason” why they shouldn’t take

    17.36 Jun. 1st, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: 8 things we learned from Gavin Williamson on plans to reopen schools

    Gavin Williamson has defended plans to begin the phased reopening of schools on June 1, hitting out at the “scaremongering” of those raising concerns. Summoned by MPs to the House of Commons to face questions about the proposal today, Williamson said the plans are a “sensible and responsible” approach to getting more children back to

    14.11 May. 13th, 2020 | News

  • 'There's still challenges' - Williamson grilled over FSM voucher scheme

    The government still faces “some challenges” over its national free school meals voucher system, the education secretary has admitted, despite the scheme now entering its fourth week of operation. Gavin Williamson appeared in front of the Parliamentary education committee today. Here’s what we learned.   1. ‘Big challenges’ of FSM voucher scheme MPs grilled Williamson

    13.12 Apr. 29th, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: Williamson pledges to 'work with the sector' on school reopenings

    Gavin Williamson has promised he will “work with the sector” to decide how schools should reopen, but only “when the time is right”. The education secretary also promised the “difficulties that social distancing present” in schools will be “taken into account”. But he reiterated “no timetable has been set” for reopening. Schools have been closed

    15.00 Apr. 24th, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: Williamson seeks to reassure heads over free laptops scheme

    The government hopes its first batch of free laptops and tablets will reach pupils “within weeks”, despite an initial delay to the application process. We hope to get the first of those devices to children who need them within weeks Gavin Williamson told Schools Week the Department for Education was in the process of ordering

    5.00 Apr. 24th, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: How schools have dealt with day one of mass closures

    Schools saw a “manageable” number of pupils arrive at their doors today as they begin to adjust to a new way of working, as parents “heeded calls” to keep their children at home unless they had no other option. But things did not go as smoothly elsewhere – with leaders reporting the requirement to submit

    17.59 Mar. 23rd, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: Schools won't be penalised for absences, says Williamson

    Schools will not be penalised for issues “that are completely outside their control”, Gavin Williamson has said, amid concerns about pupil absences caused by coronavirus. The education secretary told journalists at the ASCL conference in Birmingham this afternoon that the Department for Education would be taking a “sensible and pragmatic approach” to things like absences

    13.01 Mar. 13th, 2020 | News

  • Ministers reject nine in 10 council bids to prop up high needs budget

    Councils have warned of soaring deficits and diminishing support for vulnerable pupils after ministers rejected nine in 10 bids to shore up high needs budgets with general school funds. The local councils of both education secretary Gavin Williamson and schools minister Nick Gibb are among 22 local authorities denied permission by Williamson to move cash

    11.02 Mar. 13th, 2020 | News

  • Williamson and Gibb re-appointed in post-Brexit reshuffle

    Gavin Williamson will continue in the role of education secretary following a reshuffle that saw a number of his colleagues return to the backbenches. The MP for South Staffordshire, who has been in post since last July, said he was “delighted” to have been re-appointed by Boris Johnson in a long-awaited reshuffle held to mark

    15.00 Feb. 13th, 2020 | News