Welcome to the Tes coronavirus liveblog. The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic is causing uncertainties for everyone.
Schools are facing unprecedented disruption with efforts to keep schools open and 'Covid-secure' and many teachers facing working with "bubbles" of pupils or delivering remote lessons.
Here, we aim to help teachers in the UK and in international schools by gathering together all the relevant stories in one place and keeping you updated with the latest news and announcements as and when they happen.
And, as ever, we also want to hear from you. What is different in your school, in your working life, because of the virus? If you have stories you want to share or information you think should be circulated, then contact us at: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org and Mary-Louise.Clews@tes.com.
Ofsted says it won’t use 'catch-up' visits to inform future inspections
There has been a lot of disquiet over Ofsted’s planned visits to schools - which begin today – to check how pupils are being supported to catch up on their return to full time education following the disruption caused by Covid-19.
However. the inspectorate has published an update today which has been welcomed by school leaders.
Ofsted has made clear that any evidence its gathers on these new visits will not be used as lines of enquiry for future inspections of these schools. This commitment has been welcomed by the Confederation of School Trusts, which represents multi academy trusts across the country.
'Not possible' to say how many teachers have caught Covid, says minister
The NASUWT teaching union has questioned how the government is monitoring the transmission of Covid 19 in schools after it was revealed that the Department for Education did not know how many teachers had tested positive.
School standards minister Nick Gibb was asked by an MP how many Covid-19 cases there had been among teachers and school staff from March to July this year and how many pupils in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 had tested positive since June.
In response, he said the department collects data on daily suspected Covid-19 related absences but that it was “not possible to extrapolate from this the number of confirmed positive cases”.
This has raised alarm bells with the NASUWT whose general secretary Patrick Roach said the information was needed for vital decisions about future lockdowns.
1/3 teachers “just about coping” with return to school while 15% are “on the brink”
The Covid-19 climate is leaving teachers “on edge, stressed out and worried the whole time”, according to one headteacher who spoke to Tes.
And the latest Tes survey reveals that, less than a month into the new school year, nearly half of teachers are “drained and exhausted” while a third are “just about coping” - while 15 per cent are “physically and mentally on the brink”.
Meanwhile, the “stress and anxiety” caused by the lack of a reliable Covid testing system is adding to teachers’ woes, says a teachers' wellbeing charity.
Read the story here.
Is it time to rethink our exam system?
It's been another busy weekend in the education world, as more than 20 leading figures in the sector signed an open letter criticising the UK's "mutant exam system" and calling for an end to GCSEs.
Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), was among the signatories, who have formed a coalition aiming to fix the "exams merry-go-round" by piloting alternative approaches in schools.
Meanwhile, Oasis Community Learning founder Steve Chalke warned that the learning gap between financially disadvantaged and better-off pupils in England "has become a gulf", and called for pupil premium funding to be trebled.
You can catch-up on all of last week's developments here.