Education Secretary confirms September start date for all school children

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Education Secretary confirms September start date for all school children

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson confirmed the Government intends to bring all children back to school in September.

He told the daily Downing Street press conference: “School is vital for every one of our children. That is why we will bring all children, in all year groups, back to school in September.

“While many children have already returned to school, I do understand that there is anxiety still among parents.

“I want to assure you that the wellbeing of your children is the absolute top priority for every single one of us.”

Mr Williamson said the Government would “not allow an entire generation to lose out on their education”.

“That’s why we’re launching a £1 billion Covid catch-up plan that will lift outcomes for all pupils,” he said.

Mr Williamson said ministers would publish guidance for schools on how to bring children back “within the next two weeks”.

He told the Downing Street briefing: “This is why we’ve said clearly we’re going to be publishing the further guidance within the next two weeks so that schools have the maximum amount of time to prepare for the next phase of welcoming children back.”

The Education Secretary said the Government is looking at creating larger “bubbles” to allow class sizes to expand in time for the autumn term.

Mr Williamson said: “We’ve been creating bubbles of children in the classroom, creating a protective environment for those children.

“Currently that is at 15, what we would be looking at doing is expanding those bubbles to include the whole class.”

He said signs the virus was reducing meant ministers could look at “making sure every child returns to school”.

Mr Williamson added: “We recognise there is still going to have to be protective measures put in place to make sure children are safe and make sure that teachers and all those who work in school are safe as well, and that is why we are going to be issuing further guidance in the next two weeks.”

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