Pandemmic-linked Issues Keep 5% Children at Home

Pandemmic-linked Issues Keep 5% Children at Home

Monday 21st September 2020

Around one in 20 children in England are out of school due to issues linked to the pandemic and lockdown, the Children's Commissioner has suggested.

Anne Longfield stressed the number of schools who have sent pupils home due to a Covid-19 case was very small. There were many others, she said, with special needs or emotional problems, who had not yet returned from lockdown but getting Covid tests to schools quickly was a test the government could not afford to fail, she added.

Some eight million children attend England's schools and colleges, so 5% is about 400,000 pupils. Ms Longfield told BBC News that the number of children back in school was good, thanks to the heroic efforts of teachers and school staff.

Waits for tests

The number of schools forced to close due to an outbreak, or having to send pupils or class groups home, was very small, she said. This is despite numerous reports of schools sending children home. She urged parents and schools to "hold their nerve".

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