The problem is there isn’t any 1 approach because there isn’t any 1 shortfall. Students who’ve had a positive remote learning experience, with engaged parents, who aren’t within 12 months of GCSE or AL probably need little help and will likely catch up to where they ‘should’ have been within a term. Those at the other end of the spectrum almost certainly need some sort of targeted intervention if they are to have the key skills in place at all.
In terms of intervention, extending the school day won’t go down well with either teachers or pupils. I can say for 1 if I had to do it, I’d be asking SLT which bits of my current marking, prep or admin they were ok with not happening. It’s also worth noting that with teachers doing the job of the exam boards this year, those who have been teaching live over lockdown have worked unprecedented hours this year for no extra money and are approaching burnout. As for the pupils, engagement in lower ability groups typically drops after lunch anyway; by 5pm, say, I think little would be going in. The most unmotivated are likely to be actively disruptive by this point, especially if sports clubs etc get problematised. Good teaching can address that to a degree but it’s very tough indeed to make trigonometry or the Plantagenets more engaging than football practice or hanging out by the chippy.
Opt in holiday sessions (say 2-3 mornings a week) possibly have some merit, though like most clinics they tend to attract the worried well or the middle class kids. Scaling down exam content definitely helped this summer and will probably need to happen again next academic year. The very able, motivated and well-supported will probably find a way anyway.
Probably the most common problem we’re seeing is weaknesses in extended writing, especially grammar. Few students read for pleasure and writing and comprehension skills in many students have noticeably fallen over the course of the lockdowns. This can, to a degree, be addressed through cross-curriculum activities (more long written answers in Science, for example), but some work at home, with carefully targeted resources, will be needed for some.
Many of the problems are also societal and Covid has exacerbated them but not caused them.
That’s probably enough rambling from me!