Eight out of ten teachers are concerned that “lockdown” pupils leaving primary school this year won’t be emotionally or socially ready for secondary, new research published by the TES finds.
The study also revealed that three out of four teachers are worried that pupils coming into Year 7 are not prepared academically.
The research, which was carried out by YouGov and commissioned by GL Assessment, surveyed more than 1,000 primary and secondary school teachers across England.
Pupils heading into Year 7 this September were in Year 4 in March 2020 when disruption began in their education due to Covid – with many state schools unable to offer online learning during the summer term.
While they returned to school in September, infection rates meant constant disruptions for many and then a blanket school lockdown from January to March 2021. The following year was also marred by staff and pupil absences due to Covid and strict limits on school activities.
Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said that the findings reflected what the union had been hearing from its members.
Because of the concerns, more than seven out of 10 schools reported taking steps to address “gaps in learning and basic classroom skills”.
Meanwhile, just under half of teachers surveyed (46 per cent) said their schools are planning to offer more pastoral or emotional support, and a third (33 per cent) plan to implement a more comprehensive reading programme.