In early July 2020 the government published its safety plans for England's return to school in September - built on the principle of keeping classes or whole year groups apart in separate "bubbles
It’s very important to get children back to school to learn and socialise in the way that we have all known for 100 years or so! The Education Secretary (Gavin Williamson) said a "system of control" would "minimise the risk" from Covid-19, and children would not be taught a "watered-down" curriculum.
However, Head teachers have said it would be "mind-boggling" to try to keep groups of pupils apart all day in school.
However many parents are doubtful as to the reality of the ‘new normal’.
Separate bubbles could be incredibly difficult to achieve.
What happens for families who have children in different years? They can’t socially distance at home…. What about the mixing up of children on public transport if there isn’t room to stay in bubbles or to socially distance.
For older children there are difficult unanswered questions. How can GCSEs and A levels go ahead as ‘normal’ when pupils have missed so many months of crucial education for these exams?
And it’s not just older children. There are suggestions Year 7 might have to retake chunks of Year 6 again because of all the gaps in learning. Even much younger children learn a lot and will have missed so much.
Quite apart from learning and education, school is a place where children learn social skills, and how to interact with others. There is a fear that behaviour problems are likely after a such a lack of routine and discipline, with pupils out of the school for so long.
At the time of writing there is still a whole lot of confusion, conflicting information and unanswered questions. Advice and information seems to change from one day to another. It will be interesting to see how things are in September!
The one thing that is pretty definite is that’s it’s always a good idea to label school uniform and children’s school items – and in these uncertain times it’s more important than ever! So please buy your Name Tags and StampaNames before Back to School time!
If you would like to share your own stories of lockdown, home-schooling or back to school please email us on email@example.com
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