New lockdown restrictions announced tonight will affect parents and students across the country.
All primaries, secondary schools and colleges will be switched to remote coverage starting tomorrow, with the exception of children of key workers and vulnerable children who can attend in person.
This is in line with March last year – and is linked to rising infection rates across the country.
Announcing all schools in England to be closed, Mr Johnson said on a national broadcast tonight, “Because we must do everything now to stop the spread of the disease, elementary schools, secondary schools and colleges across England need to be in remote areas Areas move care from tomorrow, except for vulnerable children and children of key workers. “
He said that settings for early years such as kindergartens will continue to be accessible.
Mr Johnson said the move to schools will mean “it is not possible or fair for all exams to go through as usual this summer”.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson will work with the Ofqual regulator to come up with “alternative regulations,” he said.
The Prime Minister added, “We will provide additional support to ensure that students who are eligible for free school meals continue to receive them while schools are closed, and we will distribute more distance learning support equipment.”
The Prime Minister announced a new national lockdown tonight to help control rising infection rates.
People are encouraged to stay home except for important work, important purchases, and some other major reasons.
With regard to children at a young age – for example in kindergartens, alternative institutions and special schools – these institutions remain open.
The applicable rules apply to childcare and support bubbles.
There is also good news for childcare.
Kindergarten age, vulnerable people and children of critical workers over the age of five can continue to attend childcare.
However, university-aged people will be affected by today’s announcement.
Students cannot return to the university still.
They are expected to study from their current place of residence until at least mid-February if possible.
In addition, in-person tuition at the university will only continue for a small number of previously announced critical courses, such as those studying to work in healthcare.
Mr Johnson said parents “could reasonably ask why” decisions about schools weren’t made “earlier”.
“The answer is simply that we have done everything in our power to keep schools open because we know how important every day in education is for children’s life chances,” said the Prime Minister.
“And I want to emphasize that the problem is not that schools are unsafe for children. It is still very unlikely that children will be severely affected by the new variant of Covid.
“The problem is that schools can still act as transmission vectors, which is how the virus spreads between households.”