School reopening update as parents petition Government

We owe it to children to open schools says Education Secretary

School reopening update as parents petition Government

Parents have been petitioning the Government in light of yesterdays prime ministerial update, which announced that the Government will prioritise reopening primary schools in June for pupils in reception classes, year 1, and year 6.

Secondary schools are unlikely to open for any lessons until September.

National and local sources have indicated that secondary children will wait until after the summer break before returning to classes, although in yesterday’s update, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that ensuring exam-age students received study mentoring with their teachers was a priority.

However, the priority will be to get younger children in key years back earlier.

Many parents have expressed concerns over these plans, and are demanding a choice on whether or not to send their children back as early as June.

Over 300,000 parents have signed a petition. 

Lucy Browne who started the petition said:

“The UK now has the highest death toll in Europe and second highest in the world.

Many of us have lost confidence in the Government’s handling of this crisis and feel it is too early to return children to schools.

It seems it could pose risks not only to children but also teachers and those they live with – grandparents, parents and those underlying health conditions.”

Deborah Mawer who signed the petition added:

“I have a child with asthma and asthma myself and would not feel safe sending them out to potentially then have us both very very ill.”

Teaching staff are also raising concerns over the government’s plans. Michelle Forster who signed the petition wrote:

“I am a teacher and believe that we cannot return to school safely as we do not have the correct equipment, space or resources to manage the pupils and ensure social distancing measures and PPE.

Returning to school before it is safe puts thousands of pupils, families and staff at risk.”

At the moment, schools remain closed except for the children of key workers.

Although that is now expected to change in June, all timings are still conditional on the coronavirus being brought down to an acceptable level in the UK.

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