Camden and Haringey headteachers 'delighted' by schools' return
- Credit: Haverstock School/Highgate School
Local headteachers have welcomed the government’s decision to allow schools to reopen on March 8.
On Monday the prime minister Boris Johnson announced that the return of pupils would form part of the first step of easing lockdown restrictions, amid falling Covid infections.
All primary school children will return on March 8 and they will not need to take a coronavirus test, but secondary school students – whose return may be slightly more staggered – will have to.
All school staff, across primary and secondary, will be given tests to take at home.
Haverstock School headteacher James Hadley said that the local community's safety would be the primary consideration.
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"Returning to school is essential for our students’ learning and wellbeing but also for society now and in the future so I am delighted that education is being prioritised as we exit lockdown," Mr Hadley said.
Highgate School’s headteacher, Adam Pettitt, said that the two weeks’ notice it was given would allow the school enough time to prepare for reopening, including for lateral flow testing, and supporting students for exams.
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Mr Pettit said: “We are reassuring staff, parents and pupils alike that the government’s confidence in the safety of a full return on a national scale means this is the right time to come back and to re-connect the school community ‘live’.
“It’s wonderful to see the whole nation pulling together to make this work for young people: schools are grateful for the ongoing sacrifices others are making in terms of lockdown so that children can get back together and learn in ways that sees the whole child thriving.”
Jo Davey and Zoe Judge, the co-headteachers of Fortismere School, said in a statement they are “delighted” at the announcement.
“Mass testing will be a challenge but we are determined to provide as safe a setting as possible for students, staff and the wider community,” they said.
Hornsey Schools for Girls’ headteacher Angela Rooke said that while staff are “rightly concerned” about the risks of reopening, the school is putting plans in place to safely return all teachers and students.
Pupils and staff in secondary schools and higher education settings will be asked to wear a face covering indoors, unless social distancing can be maintained.