Opening schools


Writing in the Mail on Sunday yesterday, the Prime Minister said it is a national priority to get all pupils back into school in September, as nothing will have a greater effect on the life chances of children and nothing is more important for the future of our country.

  • The education of our children is crucial for their welfare, their health and for their future. That is why it is a national priority to get all pupils back into school in September.
  • In March, we had no option but to close schools as part of our efforts to protect the NHS and save lives. Parents and families have done brilliantly in supporting children to learn at home supported by teachers providing remote learning, thousands of laptops and tablets and the creation of Oak National Academy, which developed an entire online curriculum in a matter of weeks.
  • Thanks to the sacrifices made by the British people to control the virus, and now that we know enough to reopen schools safely, we have a moral duty to do so.  Time spent out of class has a lasting effect on future life chances, with children’s mental and physical health impacted the longer they are out of school.
  • We will continue to be guided by the best scientific and medical advice. The latest research – one of the largest studies on the coronavirus in schools in the world – makes it clear there is little evidence that the virus is transmitted at school. We have a detailed plan for getting all of our children back to school in a way that is safe for them and their teachers. This includes grouping children into bubbles, staggering drop-off times, regular handwashing and providing schools and colleges with a number of home testing kits.
  • Talent is uniformly distributed but opportunity is not, and the first step to changing that is by helping those who have fallen behind to catch-up. So we are investing £1 billion in catch-up support, including a new £350 million National Tutoring Programme. We have announced £14 billion extra for schools and a new 10-year school building programme, as part of the Government’s mission to build back better.
  • Keeping our schools closed a moment longer than absolutely necessary is socially intolerable, economically unsustainable and morally indefensible. Now we must all work together to re-open schools to all pupils in September.


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