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Luton schools working hard to welcome back more kids

Top Story

May 24, 2020

LUTON: Luton’s schools are working “exceptionally hard” to follow the government’s request to open for more children from the week commencing June 1 at the earliest, the Luton Council has said, but keeping children safe its the “number one priority”.

This is subject to a number of conditions being met before the government announces whether or not it will proceed with its proposals and it is likely that the decision will be forthcoming on around May 28.

“We recognise and share some of the concerns expressed locally and nationally, however we do not believe that advising all local authority schools not to open for more children on 1 June would be the best approach,” the press release said.

“The council has been working in partnership with headteachers to determine the best way to welcome back more children to schools. Keeping children and staff safe is the number one priority, therefore individual schools will decide how and when to accept increasing numbers of pupils.”

It added that risk assessments are currently being conducted and health and safety policies and practices are being reviewed to allow necessary measures to be in place to ensure everyone’s safety. Cllr Aslam Khan, portfolio holder with responsibility for education, said: “I would like to commend all Luton schools and council education staff who continually go above and beyond to ensure children and young people can continue learning either at home or in school, as well as providing critical assistance to vulnerable families. We acknowledge and appreciate your selfless dedication.

“Many of Luton’s schools are much larger than the national average and this presents a number of logistical challenges that headteachers will need to address to implement the government guidelines. And individual schools vary greatly from the size and capacity of their buildings to their staff profile.

“We would like to reassure parents and carers that the safety of all children and school staff is of paramount importance. Headteachers will plan increased pupil numbers in a systematic and phased manner and will open to more children only once all safety measures can be met. Based on current assessments it is extremely unlikely that any Luton primary school will be welcoming all pupils back before the summer holidays.”