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Primary schools will not reopen before the summer

children drawing

The Government has backed out of plans to reopen primary schools for all students before the summer holidays.

Previous plans were to allow all primary schools to open to all students, so that they could return for one month of education before the holidays.

Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary, said that, where possible, the Government will work with schools which have the capacity in order to bring more students into classrooms before the holidays start.

Following outrage and disagreement from headteachers, teachers and governors who pushed the Government to reconsider the plans, the Government has now changed its stance and announced that they will aim to bring all students back to school by September.

Many parents have also voiced their concerns, especially after Pennington Infant School in Hampshire had to close when it was confirmed that a pupil tested positive for COVID-19, and another was showing symptoms.

Back in Dorset – of the younger years: nursery, reception, Year 1 and Year 6 are the groups that have been going back into care and education since the lockdown was eased, despite the fact that some schools argued that they did not have the resources and space to adhere to social distancing and official guidance for schools from the Government.

By the end of the week, more than half of primary schools were taking pupils from these year groups, and as of yesterday that had risen to over 70% of primaries that had responded.

Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary

Statistics show that 52% of primary schools have taken on more children on Tuesday, when compared with Thursday of last week.

Here’s a take from a trust which covers two Dorset primary schools:

We have followed all Government guidelines set for wider opening/reopening, from social distancing to hygiene, to ensure our schools are safe and manageable and working conditions for both staff and pupils are safe.

We have opened our schools to the year groups specified by the Government and tried to accommodate as many pupils as current guidelines allow. However, this does impose limitations – having to maintain small class sizes and social bubbles does mean that not all primary year groups can be accommodated. Where this is not possible, our excellent online learning resources and packs remain available to pupils.

Aspirations Academies Trust
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