THE home secretary has praised teachers at a secondary school for helping their students learn during the lockdown.

Witham MP Priti Patel was speaking after making a trip to Honywood School in Coggeshall where she was shown how the school has adapted to the coronavirus crisis.

Most of its students have been learning remotely from home since March, with only Year 10 pupils allowed to attend since June.

Ms Patel sat down with headteacher James Saunders during her visit to find out teachers had used computer programmes to set students work.

They also discussed transport provision for the school when all pupils return in September and the impact the lockdown has had on Year 6 primary pupils who will be joining in less than two months time.

Ms Patel said: “It was a pleasure to visit Honywood School, to hear about the very impressive work the school has done to keep educating during the pandemic.

"I pay particular tribute to the teachers here for adapting so quickly and efficiently to unprecedented new conditions, keeping the students in the educational loop throughout the lockdown.

"I was also impressed by how positively the students adapted to their new situation and worked with teachers and classmates to make virtual learning so successful.

“Honywood School should be extremely proud of its efforts and there are lessons other schools can learn from their success.

"The focus must now be on getting all children back to school, which is the best place for them to learn."