Over a quarter of teachers (27%) believe Covid-19 related disruption will be the biggest challenge this autumn term, according to new research.
In July, edtech solutions provider Renaissance asked 472 headteachers, department heads and teachers about their thoughts and concerns as the new school term was approaching.
Covid-19 disruption such as closures and children isolating were cited as the largest expected challenges. In addition, addressing the attainment gap arising from Covid-19 disruption (20%) and the mental health of pupils (14%) followed as the next biggest expected challenges; as research revealed 73% of teachers believe pupil attainment levels have fallen because of national lockdowns.
The maths attainment gap was of particular concern to teachers with 25% reporting they felt it would be the hardest gap of all the core skills to close this term. Teachers identified maths skills such as fractions, decimals and percentages as causing the most difficulty – with 34% saying they think these core skills have been most heavily affected by the Covid disruption to date.
However, more teachers (71%) said their confidence in using edtech had increased compared to earlier on in the pandemic – in June 2020, 65% of teachers said their confidence had grown.
Renaissance are encouraging schools to take advantage of teachers’ improved edtech confidence and expand their digital offering so they can tackle the attainment gap caused by Covid-19 school closures.
John Moore, director at Renaissance, said: “We know teachers continue to face a wide range of challenges presented by Covid-19 in their classrooms. However, there’s an opportunity too to take some real positives from the pandemic – building on the way in which so many teachers have embraced technology and worked tirelessly to upskill.”