BBC re-launches educational programme offering to support learning through lockdown

BBC Two, CBBC, BBC Red Button and BBC iPlayer will come together to deliver the biggest educational offering in the corporation’s history

As the UK plunges into its third national lockdown, the BBC is getting ready to re-launch the biggest educational offering in its history – this time involving even more of its broadcasting platforms.

Following the success of its Live Lessons initiative last September, the BBC is once again committing to supporting children’s education whilst their schools are closed, bringing together its BBC Two, CBBC, BBC Red Button and iPlayer channels to deliver educational content for home learning.


From the archive: BBC helps young pupils return to the classroom


Rapidly responding to Monday’s (4 January) news that schools would be reverting back to remote teaching and learning from 5 January, the BBC’s new offering will ensure all children have access to curriculum-aligned content, even if they don’t have sufficient access to the internet at home.

Starting next Monday, 11 January, CBBC will schedule a three hour block of primary-level educational programmes each weekday from 9am, including BBC Live Lessons and BBC Bitesize Daily, on top of other educational programming such as Our School and Celebrity Supply teacher, as well as popular titles such as Horrible Histories, Art Ninja and Operation Ouch.

BBC Two will provide content tailored to secondary students, broadcasting two hours of GSCE-relevant programming every weekday.

Content will be built around Bitesize Daily secondary shows, complemented by Shakespeare and classic drama adaptations alongside science, history and factual titles from the BBC’s award-winning factual programming units.

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Bitesize Daily primary and secondary will also air on BBC Red Button, and will also be available on-demand via BBC iPlayer.

Tim Davie, BBC director general, commented: “Ensuring children across the UK have the opportunity to continue to follow the appropriate core parts of their nation’s school curriculum has been a key priority for the BBC throughout this past year.

“Education is absolutely vital – the BBC is here to play its part and I’m delighted that we have been able to bring this to audiences so swiftly.”

The corporation’s TV schedule is accompanied by an expansive online catalogue of educational content that parents, teachers and children can access any time, including:

  • Primary – BBC Bitesize online has an expanded offer of structured lessons in maths and English for all years. Additionally, ‘This Year’s Topics’ covers other curriculum subjects and curates learning content aligned to the spring curriculum. This content can be easily integrated into lesson plans or explored at home. Visit bbc.co.uk/bitesize and click on the relevant year group and subject to browse through the content.
  • Secondary – Bitesize is providing two-week learning packs for KS3 (Years 7, 8 and 9) English and maths, as well as ‘This Term’s Topics’ for other subjects to support remote lessons or learning from home.
  • Bitesize GCSE – for Year 10 and 11 students, Bitesize GCSE presents a platform from which young people can pick out their specific exam board and subject to find everything they need to help with their studies. Visit bbc.co.uk/bitesize/secondary for details.

“The BBC has helped the nation through some of the toughest moments of the last century, and for the next few weeks it will help our children learn whilst we stay home, protect the NHS and save lives,” said Oliver Dowden, secretary of state for digital, culture, media and sport.

“This will be a lifeline to parents and I welcome the BBC playing its part.”

Educational content for all nations will also be available.

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