A Norfolk secondary school is set to provide autistic children with “the education they deserve” as its specialist resource base will officially open from January 2021.

Schools are set to reopen to more children after half-term but more in Norfolk have confirmed they will not be ready to welcome back pupils on June 1.

A handful of Suffolk primary schools are not expected to reopen their doors on June 1, it has been confirmed.

A group representing school leaders in Norfolk has penned an open letter to parents dispelling rhetoric that teachers are blocking school reopenings and urging them to trust headteachers.

Secondary schools should only have a quarter of year 10 and year 12 pupils in at any one time to reduce coronavirus transmission risks, the Government’s new guidance says.

A Norwich headteacher has warned that the prime minister’s “defending of the indefensible” over advisor Dominic Cummings’ actions is set to make school re-openings even more difficult.

More than 80pc of parents who took part in a survey over schools reopening said they would not be sending their children back next week.

A town’s headteacher has revealed how his student’s lives are set to change, as the school prepares to reopen for its youngest years on June 1.

“It seems like whatever applies to the rest of society doesn’t apply in schools.”

Students from a Norfolk school won a regional cycling, running and walking competition that ‘virtually’ took them around the UK.

Primary schools in the Dereham area are treading carefully ahead of the government’s planned reopening date of June 1, with many opting to delay pupils’ return.

While politicians and unions argue over when schools should start again, headteachers like Nick Read have been busy.

A head has expressed “absolute faith” in her team to move a school forwards after an Ofsted inspection found it ‘requires improvement’.

Headteachers have warned children could be getting “part-time education” for some time, at a debate focused on the reopening of schools in Norfolk.

Dozens of questions are being asked by schools in Suffolk as they prepare to open schools from June 1 in a bid to ensure safety.

A headteacher has praised the outstanding efforts of her staff as preparations continue for a return to the classroom.

Children of key workers and vulnerable children have been fed at school during lockdown thanks to supermarket donations.

A headteacher has written to parents warning how life in the classroom will be radically different when her school reopens to pupils.

Individual headteachers and governors will be given the final say on when schools can open to more children, the leader of Norfolk County Council has said.

The chief executive of the largest primary-only academy trust in the country has stressed that schools will only reopen to priority year groups once “rigorous risk assessments” had been carried out.

Dedicated home-schooling activities have been produced to help children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) in Suffolk during the coronavirus lockdown.

Four schools in Norfolk got pupils together online to record a specially written song thanking their teachers during lockdown.

Primary schools are continuing to plan and prepare for a phased return to the classroom – with seven in Waveney provisionally reopening next month.

The Government’s plan to potentially start allowing children in reception, year one and six to return to school from June 1 has received mixed reactions.

Headteachers and the Norfolk representative of the biggest teachers’ union are set to join parents for a virtual video debate of the reopening of schools.

A Gorleston primary school has closed for a “deep clean” after the keyworker parent of a child tested positive for coronavirus.

Two schools have joined forces to put on a virtual marathon to help raise money to make up for their loss of income.

Almost two thirds of parents in Norfolk believe that children should not return to school until September.

The co-owner of a forest school nursery hopes the lockdown could lead to a shake-up of how we think about learning.

A college is set to hold a virtual open day next month to give students the chance to explore their options for further education.

Schools would benefit from sharing staff and skills if they are merged, a headteacher has said.

Home-schooling students of any age can seem like a daunting task but add teenagers into the mix and you’re in for a challenge. With the uncertainty of coronavirus, you may be left worrying about their education and feeling like the responsibility falls to you.

A mid Norfolk high school has kept hold of its ‘good’ Ofsted rating after a recent inspection.

Seven primary schools in west Norfolk plan to reopen on June 1.

As lockdown starts to ease and the government advises that nurseries can re-open as of June 1, many parents are undecided about whether they should let their children return. Our reporter EMILY THOMSON spoke to two nursery owners from Thetford who say they are still uncertain about the future.

It’s a debate that has raged over the last few weeks - do parents feel safe sending their children back to school in June and can headteachers run them successfully while social distancing?

Teachers and support staff should ask dozens of questions about safety before schools decide to open their doors to more pupils next month, according to the latest guidance from education unions.

Education chiefs say they recognise how “demanding” it will be for Norfolk schools to open to more children in the months ahead - and that headteachers will be best placed to decide when to reopen.

Norfolk-born and educated inventor Sir James Dyson has topped the Sunday Times Rich List for the first time after increasing his net worth by £3.6bn in a year.

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has appealed to teaching unions to work with the government to find “practical solutions” to enable schools in England to begin reopening.

Special educational needs bosses in Suffolk have turned around the ailing performance in processing care plan assessments, and are now above the national average it has emerged.

Confusion and uncertainty are dominating as teachers, parents and the government try to plan a safe return to the classroom for children.

A Norfolk MP has said that he is confident five-year-olds can be “taught” to socially distance in schools, despite teaching unions suggesting this is “impossible”.

Parents across Norfolk and Waveney have slammed suggestions children could return to school as soon as the beginning of next month.

Suffolk education leaders are set to lobby the Government on reimbursing schools which have had to fork out for free school meals, following failings in the national programme.

A headteacher has laid out her vision of what a return to school could look like, saying she cannot guarantee the safety of children.

The first details of a multi-million pound redevelopment of a former middle school site have been revealed.

A town’s secondary school is celebrating after receiving a ‘good’ rating which reported that pupils “feel valued and cared for”.

The government is aiming to see all primary school children spend a month back at school before the summer holidays, according to its updated guidance.

Teachers will be reviewing the progress their pupils have made while learning at home during lockdown as they prepare for a gradual reopening of schools.

Students at a coastal college have been spreading joy in the community throughout the coronavirus crisis.

School transport providers in Suffolk will be required to provide flexibility once pupils start returning to the classroom, according to education bosses.

Headteachers have said plans for primary children to start returning to the classroom from June 1 needs to be proved to be safe and workable amid concerns over social distancing young pupils and staff.

Suffolk teachers and parents have raised their concerns about the prospect of schools re-opening in the county.

Young children could start returning to nurseries in from June 1, with the aim for all primary school pupils to go back for a month before summer.

The Prime Minister has outlined a possible phased return of schools from June 1, as part of a planned second wave of easing lockdown measures from Covid-19.

Two Norwich schools have launched a crowdfunding campaign to help 30 young pupils who have no internet at home and no device to do schoolwork on.

A former University of East Anglia lecturer who claimed to be the victim of sex and race discrimination has been awarded more than £55,000 compensation after an employment tribunal found she was unfairly dismissed.

It’s a cliche to say school is the best days of your life, just at one Norfolk college it seems to be true, as dozens of former pupils enjoyed it so much they have returned to become members of staff.

An education trust has appointed a new headteacher for one of its schools in Suffolk.

A teacher has found online fame from as far as America after creating a series of online lessons to help her students learn during the coronavirus lockdown.

Lauren Cope

Bethany Whymark

Education correspondent



Bethany is based in Norwich and writes about key issues affecting education in Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire, including decisions made at both national and local government levels.

Bethany also covers news from the hundreds of schools in our region and keeps on top of local results.

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GCSE 2019 results map

Percentage of students achieving a grade four or above in English and maths - Green pin = Up on last year; Yellow pin = Same as last year; Red pin = Down on last year; Grey pin = Awaiting results

A-Levels 2019 results map

Percentage of A-Levels graded A*-C - Green pin = Up on last year; Yellow pin = Same as last year; Red pin = Down on last year; Grey pin = Awaiting results

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