A personal message from our chief executive, Prof. Becky Francis:

This has been an incredibly challenging time for teachers in schools, nurseries and colleges. Education professionals have had to respond to huge logistical and emotional challenges, in order to find ways to support learning, and to support the diverse needs of pupils and their families, and colleagues, during the Covid-19 crisis. That response has been amazing. Your creativity, commitment and professionalism has been inspirational, and has highlighted the role of our education institutions as pivotal in our communities. We have learnt much in this period about effective ways to support remote learning, and here at the EEF we are working with you to support effective practice going forward. I wanted to offer you my appreciation, as well as my best wishes for an extremely well-deserved summer break.


Getting transition right: practical, evidence-based strategies to support pupils moving from Year 6 to Year 7


 Transition is a key issue for both primaries and secondaries as schools plan the full return in September of all children. In two articles, Kirsten Mould, a serving secondary school leader and SENCo on part-time secondment at the EEF, explores:

– Four key evidence-based principles her school is using to support pupils, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, as they move from Year 6 to Year 7.


FIND OUT MORE: Getting transition right (1) – four practical, evidence-based strategies


– How the evidence-based recommendations from five EEF guidance reports can be applied by schools to support transition following Covid-19 closures.


FIND OUT MORE: Getting transition right (2) – applying evidence to promote positive learning behaviours


In case you missed them: Explore our 4 guidance reports published this past year   


Clear and actionable recommendations for teachers, based on the best available evidence, on a range of high-priority issues:


Improving Social and Emotional Learning in Primary Schools


A School’s Guide to Implementation (UPDATED)


Improving Mathematics in the Early Years and Key Stage 1


Special Educational Needs in Mainstream Schools


You can read and download, completely free, all 15 of our evidence-based guidance reports here.


National Tutoring Programme: supporting schools to address the impact of Covid-19 closures on pupils’ learning    


The National Tutoring Programme will enable schools to offer additional high-quality tutoring to pupils who have missed out the most as a result of Covid-19 closures. A website will be launched in August with further information. There is also an email list you can sign up to for progress updates.


Sign up HERE for National Tutoring Programme updates by email


This week we hosted an hour-long webinar for 350 school leaders, ‘Using evidence to support schools close the Covid-19 disadvantage gap’, including Q&A on the National Tutoring Programme. A recording of the session is available here; and the slides can be accessed here.


Assessing learning: 3 key questions for school leaders to consider for the new academic year   


 Assessment – to help identify pupils’ learning gaps following Covid-19 school closures – has emerged as one of the top priorities for schools preparing for the new school year. In two articles for the EEF website, our senior associate Prof. Rob Coe explores:

– The different purposes of assessment to help teachers and school leaders think through what you want to put in place for the autumn.


FIND OUT MORE: Assessing learning (1) – key questions for school leaders


– The role of quality assessment in helping teachers understand how best to help your pupils regain any learning lost during Covid-19 school closures.


FIND OUT MORE: Assessing learning (2) – supporting pupils to regain lost learning


Armchair CPD: Strategic readers / Metacognition / Learning behaviours


Our Content Specialists are four experienced school leaders who spend part of their week in their schools in Blackpool, Northumberland, Norwich and Shropshire – while also helping steer the EEF’s campaigns to support schools put evidence into practice in literacy, maths, science and ‘learning behaviours’. Here are three of their presentations from the recent ResearchEd hosted by Norwich Research School:


PS: “Reading is the key to learning. Put simply, academic reading helps pupils access the school curriculum.” So says the EEF’s Alex Quigley in this talk for ResearchED Home 2020 – Closing the Reading Gap (inc. in the time of the Coronavirus) – in which he unlocks what reading gap looks like in the classroom. WATCH HERE.


Including: our rapid evidence assessments on supporting students to learn remotely and the impact of school closures on the attainment gap.


CLICK HERE to explore all our Covid-19 resources to support schools


Research Schools: ‘How Reading for Pleasure Will Help Us to Support Children Back Into School’


‘This approach is simple, inexpensive and enjoyable for teachers and children. We know what a difference it can make both to attainment and to support mental and emotional health,’ writes St Matthew’s Research School, in Birmingham.


CLICK HERE to read


Our 40-strong Research Schools Network has published more than 70 blogs and videos focused on school closures and remote learning over the past few months. A selection of these, highlighted by theme – eg, Questioning, Feedback and Assessment – are available here.


Access ‘Applying the Evidence to School Closures’ HERE


Call for proposals: Systematic review of evidence on Continuing Professional Development (CPD)


We are seeking proposals from research teams with expertise in undertaking systematic reviews, a very strong understanding of the evidence base surrounding CPD, and experience conducting surveys of current practice.

This review will be used to inform an EEF guidance report on CPD, due to be published in October 2021.


CLICK HERE for further information


What works at Key Stage 4, two or three years of study?The EEF and NFER are currently investigating whether a two- or three-year Key Stage 4 curriculum is better for pupil outcomes and schools, or whether there is no difference. As part of this research, NFER are emailing a survey to all secondary schools, which takes only around 5 minutes to complete.
Click this link to find out more about the study.
Or request your school’s unique survey link by clicking here.


Suggested reading: 7 new reports worth a look


► Support for vulnerable pupils and the children of keyworkers‘ – ‘Senior leaders (57 per cent) and teachers (75 per cent) report a lack of pupil engagement in learning as one of their main challenges in supporting vulnerable pupils who are not attending school,’ reports NFER.

► Getting the balance right – latest report from The Sutton Trust examines the 30-hours childcare policy and whether the right balance is being achieved between high-quality early education and flexible, affordable childcare.

► Minimising contact and maintaining distance – examples from practice – a practical resource produced by school leader members of the Dept for Education advisory group on how they will implement DfE guidance for the full return to school in September.

► An evaluation of the framework for inspecting local areas’ special educational needs and/or disabilities services– Ofsted has published a new evaluation report looking at how the area SEND framework is being implemented and its perceived impact on children and young people with SEND.

► Information and guidance for governing boards during COVID-19 – published by the National Governance Association (NGA), this includes a new document, ‘Preparing for full school opening: engaging with the risk assessment and planning process’.

► Closing the word gap: learning from five areas who have gained ground– Jean Gross draws out some of the learning from five Early Intervention Foundation case studies of local areas which have managed to reduce the early language gap.

► 4 ways learning support could change in September – Natalie Packer in Tes with some practical suggestions, including how to deploy teaching assistants to support in and across ‘bubbles’.


Did you miss our last email? Catch up HERE on back issues of ‘EEF News Alert’

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