Menu
Sat, 15 June 2024

Newsletter sign-up

Subscribe now
The House Live All
Parliament Unwrapped: What did the 2019-2024 Parliament mean for workers’ health, safety, and wellbeing? Partner content
Health
Five-point manifesto to support people and families living with obesity Partner content
Health
This is manifestly the moment for dementia to be made a priority Partner content
Health
Education
Soaring dementia care costs reach £42 billion in UK – and families bear the brunt Partner content
Health
Press releases

Coronavirus: Every school in the UK set to close for months on Friday to halt spread of outbreak

Many schools across England have already been forced to close due to staff shortages

2 min read

Every school in the UK is set to close its doors on Friday as ministers step up their attempts to slow down the spread of coronavirus.

Both the Welsh and Scottish devolved governments have announced that all state schools in those countries will shut at the end of the week.

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson is expected to confirm on Wednesday evening that England is following suit.

The Northern Ireland Executive has yet to state its intentions, but is almost certain to do the same.

The dramatic development - which brings the UK into line with the rest of Europe - came as Health Secretary Matt Hancock the UK is aiming to test 25,000 people a day for the virus to help tackle the spread. 

Speaking on Wednesday afternoon, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said all schools and nurseries in Scotland will close to pupils at the end of the week.

Meanwhile Welsh Education Minister Kirsty Williams said: “I can announce we are bringing forward the Easter break for schools in Wales. 

“Schools across Wales will close for statutory provision of education at the latest on 20 March 2020.”

Both ministers also said there would be further announcements on support for low income students, those who have exams and pupils with additional learning needs.

But when quizzed on school closures during Prime Minister’s Questions, Boris Johnson only said a decision on schools would be taken “imminently”.

Hundreds of schools in England are already closed or partially closed because of staff shortages.

And on Tuesday, General Secretary of the ASCL headteachers Geoff Barton union said that many schools would struggle to stay open past the end of the week due to "intolerable pressure".

PoliticsHome Newsletters

PoliticsHome provides the most comprehensive coverage of UK politics anywhere on the web, offering high quality original reporting and analysis: Subscribe

Read the most recent article written by Eleanor Langford - Who Is Going On Strike And When In February?

Partner content
Connecting Communities

Connecting Communities is an initiative aimed at empowering and strengthening community ties across the UK. Launched in partnership with The National Lottery, it aims to promote dialogue and support Parliamentarians working to nurture a more connected society.

Find out more