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Mon, 10 August 2020

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No10 says scientific evidence on reopening schools will be published on Friday amid row with unions

No10 says scientific evidence on reopening schools will be published on Friday amid row with unions

Teachers’ unions have demanded to see the working behind the Government’s plan.

2 min read

Downing Street has promised the scientific advice behind its school reopening plan will be published on Friday amid an ongoing row with teachers’ unions over the plan.

Teachers' representatives and a string of councils have raised concerns about the “phased” proposal to ask primary school pupils in reception, year one and year six to return to the classroom from 1 June at the earliest.

Unions including the NEU and the NASUWT - who have been invited to briefings with the Government’s chief scientific adviser in recent days - have urged ministers to reveal evidence from the Scientific Group on Emergencies (Sage) on the plan. 

Meanwhile some councils, including Conservative-run administrations, have suggested that they will not be ready to fully reopen next Monday.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesperson said on Thursday: ”We are continuing to discuss this with teachers and their union representatives.

“You can expect the Sage evidence on the safety of going back to schools to be published later this week.

“It remains our intention to get as many children as possible back into school as soon as they are able in a way that’s safe.”

Number 10 later confirmed the Sage evidence would be published on Friday.

Ministers have previously said their plans to reopen schools are based on the "best scientific and medical advice", with classrooms asked to cap the number of children present at 15 and the possibility of neighbouring schools asked to take on extra children if those lower class sizes cannot be maintained.


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