Education Endowment Foundation:Impact of Key Stage 1 school closures on later attainment and social skills (a longitudinal study)

Impact of Key Stage 1 school closures on later attainment and social skills (a longitudinal study)

Project info

Assessing the impact of COVID-19 school closures at KS1 on later pupil outcomes (KS1 and KS2)

Pupils: 6100 Schools: 87
Participating settings: 87

This is a longitudinal study that follows the youngest school-age children affected by the COVID pandemic over time to understand the impact of school closures on the attainment of pupils in reading and maths, and on the gap between the attainment of disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged children. The study participants were in KS1 (Y1 & Y2) during the first partial school closure and will be re-tested annually over two years.

The initial completed one-year project on the impact of Covid-19 school closures on pupil outcomes in Key Stage 1 has provided rich data on the impacts of missed learning, but there are more questions about the extent to which pupils’ learning recovers that can be answered by continuing to track the pupils involved in the study. Children of this age are relatively less able to learn independently and therefore could be disproportionately affected by closures. In particular, Year 1 pupils had little reception year schooling, thus, missing out on crucial opportunities to develop socially and emotionally and to prepare for the transition from reception to KS1.

This study seeks to understand how quickly children catch up to where they might be expected to be, had the pandemic not happened. The findings may provide evidence on the impact of school closures on attainment and any differential impact on subgroups (with a particular focus on the disadvantage gap), and on subjects/​specific domains within subjects. The study will be a combination of quantitative research looking at pupil attainment derived from NFER test data, supplemented with qualitative evidence of school practices and teachers’ perspectives of a subsample of pupils’ social skills.

Autumn term 2022.