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Commenting on the call by the Local Government Association (LGA) for councils to be given powers to close schools if testing indicates clusters of new COVID-19 cases, Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union, said:

“The NASUWT supports the call by the LGA for an enforcement mechanism to enable schools to be closed where clusters of COVID-19 cases emerge. Taking the step to close a school where testing indicates a cluster will be a vital part of controlling the spread of the virus.

“However, such a mechanism relies on an effective and widespread testing and tracing programme to be in place, something which to date is still woefully lacking and which the Government has failed to get a grip on.

“We have challenged the government to publish the scientific advice which underpins its decision to try to start to reopen schools from 1 June and to explain how it can demonstrate to school staff and parents that the decisions it is making are the right ones to protect public health.

“The NASUWT remains clear that no school should reopen until it can demonstrate that it is safe to do so.”

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