Pandemic 'changed learning for better', says Williamson

Some consequences of remote learning have been an 'unqualified success', says education secretary
26th January 2021, 5:31pm
Amy Gibbons

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Pandemic 'changed learning for better', says Williamson

https://www.tes.com/magazine/archived/pandemic-changed-learning-better-says-williamson
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People have "lost sight" of how the coronavirus pandemic has "changed learning for the better", the education secretary has said.

While some consequences of remote learning have been "challenging to say the least", others have actually been an "unqualified success", according to Gavin Williamson.

Addressing the Education Policy Institute think tank, Mr Williamson said remote education had been a "major achievement" and would bring about a "revolution in learning".


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"Unprecedented problems require unprecedented solutions - and schools, teachers and leaders have all pulled together to bring about one of the biggest shifts the education sector has ever seen," the education secretary said.

Coronavirus: Remote education 'has been a major achievement'

"Our increasing dependence on technology has changed our entire approach to teaching with a switch to remote education.

"Because we have become so used to looking at the negative effects of the pandemic, we have lost sight of one of the more positive aspects and how it has changed learning for the better.

"While some of the consequences of remote learning have been challenging to say the least, some of them have turned out to be an unqualified success."

Mr Williamson also said he was "sure" that teachers and parents now have a "far better grasp" of "what the other has to contend with" as a result of the pandemic.

He added that, beyond the pandemic, "digitally agile teaching" should become "the standard and not the exception".

"For us, the future of technology needs to be that continued conversation, and I welcome your insights on how we can work better and together to keep it going but making sure that we are delivering real change, where it is felt in our schools by the pupils who are learning," he said.

"When we eventually move on from this pandemic, we will be able to look back with huge pride at what we were able to do for our pupils and students despite the extreme challenges posed by the Covid pandemic.

"Remote education has been a major achievement, not just for children today but for all of those in the years to come. And the revolution in learning that it will bring."

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