"Although most parents and carers provide a good home education, the LGA is concerned that the pandemic has led to increasing numbers of children receiving education outside the classroom and missing out on the benefits that a school environment brings, such as safeguarding and learning and socialising with other children."
The long-term funding of schools has become more vital after they have incurred considerable additional costs due to COVID-19, the impacts of which will be with children and young people for years to come.
"Councils have worked closely with schools during the pandemic to ensure no child goes without a place. Despite an increase in applicants, the number of parents offered any of their ranked preference primary schools has increased to more than 98 per cent, with the equivalent offer rate for secondary schools maintained at more than 95 per cent."
"Keeping children safe is everyone’s responsibility, and local safeguarding partnerships, including councils, health providers and the police along with schools will want to consider carefully the findings and recommendations of this report."
Councils stand ready to help the Government prioritise disadvantaged pupils in its education recovery plan and to prevent the attainment gap between disadvantaged children and young people and their peers from widening further as a result of the pandemic.
"The impacts of COVID-19 will be with us for years to come. They will show up in economic hardship, mental health issues, attainment gaps and more, and it will be up to councils, schools and their partners to support children and their families to navigate these challenges."
“The Government needs to urgently complete its positive ongoing review of the SEND system. This needs to set out reforms that increase mainstream inclusion, provide councils with long-term certainty of funding to meet immense demand for SEND support."
“The Government should work with councils and schools on education recovery and set out plans for the summer and beyond as soon as possible to help teachers and staff plan ahead to make up for lost learning due to the pandemic."