21 May 2020, The Tablet

Inform, consult, persuade


At least two thirds of the member states of the European Union have begun to wind down their strict lockdown measures and allow schools to start functioning again. So why has a modest proposal from Boris Johnson’s government for some primary schools to open their doors from 1 June to pupils in Year One and Year Six – roughly, five and 10-year-olds – caused such a kerfuffle? Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland, as well as major local authorities in such places as Newcastle, Manchester and Birmingham, have resisted the move, as have the teachers’ unions and bodies representing head teachers. Not surprisingly, parents are dismayed by this confusion.

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