Today the Department for Education has announced plans to publish new data from the autumn on how individual schools are using the National Tutoring Programme (NTP), as part of efforts to improve take up across the country.
Commenting on the NTP plans, Natalie Perera, Chief Executive of the Education Policy Institute (EPI), said:
“Tutoring can be an effective intervention and the government was right to prioritise this as a central part of their education recovery package. But is it clear that the implementation of the National Tutoring Programme has been beset by problems, particularly in its second year of operating, with take-up for tutoring disappointingly low.
“It is sensible that schools now have more funding and autonomy to purchase tuition themselves, in a way that works for them locally.
“But, while we welcome more transparency around how much tuition is being offered to pupils, the announcement that schools will be named, and their details passed on to Ofsted, suggests that the government is penalising schools for its poor implementation of the programme.
“Accountability for the NTP and its deficiencies should fall on the Department for Education, not individual headteachers and leaders.
“Rather than putting unnecessary and unfair pressure on schools, the government should take responsibility for the programme’s shortcomings, and give schools more time and support to offer tuition for pupils, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds.”