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Commenting on the joint statement made by the UK Chief Medical Officers on schools and childcare reopening, Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT – The Teachers’ Union, said:

“As we have made clear since the start of this crisis, Governments and administrations must follow the scientific evidence and advice when planning for the reopening of schools.

“The joint statement issued by the UK’s chief medical officers underlines the critical importance of safe working practices in schools, ensuring that social distancing and stringent hygiene measures are in place and secure at all times, particularly for those with underlying health conditions.
 
“Today’s statement adds weight to the Prime Minister’s message that there is a moral duty to reopen schools, and that schools must reopen safely.

“The chief medical officers’ statement has reinforced the critical importance of effective risk control measures. Governments across the UK must take steps to ensure that there are effective systems in place to monitor schools’ practices and to provide ongoing reassurance on safety after schools reopen.
 
“It is regrettable that the statement from the chief medical officers has not commented specifically on the well-known racial disparities linked to Covid-19. We have asked the Government to publish its evidence on the equality impact of its plans for schools but so far they have refused to do so. It is important that the public is given all the facts.”
 

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