BMA backs teaching unions’ opposition to schools reopening

The British Medical Association has thrown its weight behind teaching unions opposing the government’s push to reopen schools in England, as the debate over millions of pupils returning to classrooms grew increasingly acrimonious.

The country’s children’s commissioner, Anne Longfield, also weighed in, calling for ministers and teachers to “stop squabbling” and return to the classroom to help disadvantaged children. No 10 reinforced its drive to reopen primary schools for those in reception, year 1 and year 6 in two weeks’ time, warning that prolonged closures risked damaging children’s education.

But the BMA – the UK’s largest doctors’ union – said in a letter to the National Education Union on Friday that the number of coronavirus infections remained too high to allow them to run safely. Teaching unions had been “absolutely right” to urge caution and prioritise testing before reopening schools on 1 June.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/15/bma-backs-teaching-unions-in-opposing-reopening-of-schools

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‘Confusing’, ‘frustrating’ and ‘unfair’ – heads respond to Boris Johnson’s schools announcement

The prime minister’s announcement that schools may begin to reopen on June 1 has been labelled as “confusing”, “frustrating” and “unfair” by headteachers.

Boris Johnson announced last night that he hoped pupils in reception, year 1 and year 6 would be able to return to schools on June 1, and set out an “ambition” to allow secondary school pupils with exams next year “at least some time with their teachers before the holidays”.

https://schoolsweek.co.uk/confusing-frustrating-and-unfair-heads-respond-to-boris-johnsons-schools-announcement/

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School reopening plan branded ‘reckless’

England’s biggest teaching union has described the prime minister’s announcement tonight that primary schools could reopen to more pupils after half term as “nothing short of reckless”.

In an address to the nation, Boris Johnson has said that primary schools could open after half term for pupils in three year groups.

But the leaders of teacher and school leader unions have expressed serious concerns over the plans.

https://www.tes.com/news/school-reopening-plan-branded-reckless

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Sending England back to work and back to school?

England is still in crisis, and its government are in denial. It is very clear from Boris Johnson’s ‘address to the nation‘ last night (Sunday 10 May) that the government are trying to wish their way out of this crisis and that their top priority is the economy, not human life. There are clear differences in the attitudes of the UK government, applying directly to England, and the governments of other parts of the UK.

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Prime Minister’s announcement does little to assuage teachers’ concerns about the premature reopening of schools

Responding to tonight’s statement from the Prime Minister, Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT – The Teachers’ Union, said:

“The Prime Minister’s statement that it would be “madness” to risk a second spike in transmission of the Coronavirus highlights the need for extreme caution.

“Regrettably, the Prime Minister’s announcement is likely to provoke confusion and does not address the genuine concerns that have been raised by teachers.

“The Prime Minister’s announcement lacks the clarity of statements issued by Ministers in Scotland and Wales who have reaffirmed the key ‘stay at home’ message.

“The Government’s announcement that schools in England might reopen to more children from 1 June risks thousands of schools rushing to make decisions about how best to safeguard the health and safety of children and staff in the absence of any clear national guidance.

https://www.nasuwt.org.uk/article-listing/premature-reopening-of-schools.html

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