Teachers prepare to welcome back pupils on Monday


Teachers are working around the clock to ensure primary schools can reopen next week and provide children with a sense of “belonging and joy”, school leaders said today.

In some London boroughs, almost all primary schools will welcome back more children from Monday. Schools are currently only open for vulnerable children or the children of key workers. But the Government wants children in nursery, reception, year one and year six to return to school on June 1, while abiding by new safety rules.

In Kingston, 93 per cent of primary schools will be taking more pupils from Monday and in Richmond the figure is 96 per cent. In Kensington and Chelsea all 25 schools and three academies are expected to welcome back more pupils, and in Westminster around 90 per cent are expected to allow more pupils in.

In other areas the picture is less clear. In Tower Hamlets, 53 of 74 primary schools have remained open for vulnerable children and children of key workers. But just three have confirmed they will be opening to more children on Monday. A spokeswoman said some schools will hold staff training sessions before deciding how and when to reopen.

She added: “Some schools may need more time to prepare for reopening. Others may be struggling with levels of staff, where members are self-isolating.”

In Hackney all schools have remained open for vulnerable children, but the council said: “At this point we don’t know how many more children will return to school from next week.”

Most schools in Ealing have remained partially open and a “few” are expected to open to more children next week. This will increase until most will be open by June 15.

All schools are working on reducing class sizes, staggering lunchtimes and widening entry points to make sure they can keep staff and pupils safe.

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