Should all primary schools be closed in January? You share your views

Do you think schools should close early for Christmas? Picture: PA Wire/PA Images/Jane Barlow

Do you think schools should close early for Christmas? Picture: PA Wire/PA Images/Jane Barlow - Credit: PA

As children in Suffolk prepare to go back to school, readers have shared their views on whether all primaries should be closed in January.

Primary schools in the county are set to open as planned next week, while those in areas of the country with the highest infection rates will remain closed, including Braintree and Chelmsford in Essex.

Secondary schools will see a staggered return with pupils in exam years prioritised to return on January 11, while all other pupils and college students will return on January 18 - to help prepare for mass Covid-19 testing of teachers and students.

This staggered return has been described as "sensible" by education leader Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL).

Where schools are closed, only vulnerable children and children of critical workers will attend face-to-face lessons.

We asked: 'Should all primary schools be closed in January?'

More than 300 people commented on our Facebook post, with a range of views on the topic.

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Here are some of your comments:

  • Can someone explain why people can’t see close family but can send their children to school to mix with 100s of others? Why we’re limited on being able to attend funerals, yet can shove kids with 100s of others.
  • Yes absolutely!! Why should the teachers have to risk their health with no PPE and children who do not understand and are unable to social distance, and could be spreading covid as they may be asymptomatic! Grrrr They have kept themselves safe and followed all the rules at Christmas, not seeing family or friends, but on Monday they will be mixing with maybe 30 young people from different household! It just does not make sense!
  • Yes, should be a complete lockdown of everything like in March but just for a month or so, so they can roll the vaccine out.
  • Yes. The government should provide laptops and resources to ALL families so no child is left out due to not being able to facilitate expensive items.
  • Yes all school staff need to be protected!
  • I would like them to stay open, our primary school has been brilliant putting in place bubbles, one way systems & using ppe/ washing & sanitising hands. I just wish that all of the parents would adhere to the social distancing.
  • Schools should remain open to all. If you want to close schools then close all supermarkets and fine the 100,000 of people breaking the rules over Christmas.
  • My kids haven't mixed with anyone over the holidays. They are perfectly fine to go to school. Being a key worker they need to go to school. Their education has suffered enough this year. Give the teachers sufficient PPE and get THEM vaccinated.
  • It’s a very difficult and complex debate really. On one hand, of course they should, we need to protect people, however on the other, how much damage would we be doing for children not only educational but children’s mental health and social skills in the meantime.

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