Children’s Commissioner Anne Longfield has said children must be at the heart of planning for any future coronavirus lockdowns, including by making sure all children are back in school in September.
She has also called for schools to stay open as long as possible, and in case of widespread infection to only be closed as a last resort, once other options have been exhausted.
It is the Department’s plan that all pupils, in all year groups, will return to school full-time from the beginning of the autumn term. In the event of a local outbreak, some schools may be advised to close temporarily to help control transmission if necessary. The Department has asked schools to prepare a contingency plan in case of this scenario, which might include the school remaining open to vulnerable children and the provision of remote education for all other pupils.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said:
“Getting all children back into the classroom, full-time at the start of next month is a national priority, as this is the best place for them to be.
“We have always been and will continue to be guided by the best scientific and medical advice, and our detailed guidance sets out protective measures for schools to implement ahead of a full return in September.”