Friday, July 10News That Matters

Coronavirus: ‘Great deal of logic’ in letting younger pupils return first, says Ofsted chief inspector

There’s a “great deal of logic” in allowing younger children to return to school first as the UK’s lockdown is eased, Ofsted’s chief inspector has told Sky News.

Amanda Spielman told Sky News’ Sophy Ridge on Sunday show the interests of children were “best served” by “being back at school as soon as possible”, after coronavirus restrictions start to be lifted.

Schools in the UK have been closed because of COVID-19 – except for the attendance of children of key workers – since 20 March, but Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has told MPs the government is planning the “phased” reopening of English schools once the UK exits a full lockdown.

Although Ms Spielman said the return of schools should be weighed up against the possible impact on the NHS, she added: “If you look at the interests of children, it’s very clear that their interests are best served – in the vast majority of cases – by being back at school as soon as possible.”

She also suggested younger children should be the first to be sent back to classrooms.

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