Catch-up our 'biggest national challenge', says Johnson

Prime minister says 'remediating' the damage done to education by Covid-19 is greatest challenge for UK

Catherine Lough

Covid catch-up is our 'biggest national challenge', says Boris Johnson

The prime minister has said helping students to catch up on lost learning from the pandemic is the "biggest national challenge" faced by the UK.

Speaking at today's Downing Street briefing, Boris Johnson said: "We have to recognise that parents up and down the country, teachers, have been coping with absolutely exceptional circumstances. Some pupils have had differential loss of learning – for one reason or another they've been more disadvantaged by the pandemic than others.

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"We have to make up that lost learning. We have to be very creative and direct in the way we do it. So one of the things that we're looking at, and Sir Kevan Collins, the education recovery commissioner, is looking at, is tutoring and what you can do to make a difference one-on-one with pupils.

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"And that might apply to kids who have fallen behind or kids who might need their potential unleashed in all sorts of ways," he said, adding that the government would also be reviewing the curriculum.

He continued: "I think it is our biggest national challenge...the biggest challenge now is remediating the damage done to the education of kids and young people in this country. I know we can do it, but it's going to take a lot of focus and a lot of drive, and that's why we've appointed Sir Kevan and his team."

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author bio

Catherine Lough

Catherine Lough is a reporter at Tes.

Find me on Twitter @CathImogenLough

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