Kingston Council raises concerns about schools reopening
Kingston Council is totally baffled by the government’s decision to open Kingston’s primary schools next week - despite the borough having some of the highest COVID-19 rates in the country.
Kingston’s headteachers and the local authority - along with fellow London boroughs - were not consulted about the decision before it was made. This means that schools in surrounding boroughs remain closed for the majority of children even though they have lower Covid infection rates.
Leader of Kingston Council, Caroline Kerr, said:
“The decision about which schools open or close appears to be based on a limited window of time which doesn't represent the true picture of infection risk in Kingston. It doesn’t make any sense.
“We know that parents are worried and want to understand this - so do we. We are urgently seeking clarity on the reasoning for the decision to open Kingston’s schools and want to be able to input local knowledge to make sure the potential impact of the decision is clear.
Kingston’s headteachers know their schools better than anyone else and we will fully support them as they make plans for the next few weeks and the start of the school term.”
A link to the government plans for opening of Kingston schools - secondary, primary and other education settings is here.
Reopening schools in Kingston
The current situation is that primary schools in Kingston upon Thames will reopen to all pupils on 4 January 2021.
Week beginning 4 January 2021
- Schools open for the children of critical workers and vulnerable children
- Years 11 and 13 only receive remote learning
- All pupils in other year groups will not be at school or receiving remote learning
- Schools use this week to prepare their testing programmes
- School testing may be possible in some schools for pupils during this week, starting with Years 11 and
Week beginning 11 January 2021
- Testing starts in priority year groups (starting with Years 11 and 13 if not already tested)
- Pupils in Years 11 and 13 return to face-to-face learning
- All remaining year groups receive remote learning
Week beginning 18 January 2021
- Testing continues
- All pupils can return to face-to-face learning
Special schools (including specialist provisions in mainstream schools) and alternative education provision
All pupils in all year groups return to face-to-face learning in schools from 4 January 2021.