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Maidenhead schools react to March return announcement

Schools around Maidenhead are set to reopen to all students in less than two weeks after the Prime Minister announced the first lockdown restrictions that would be eased.

From Monday, March 8, schools in the borough will be open to all students for face-to-face teaching after months of remote learning done from home.

Under the plans, all primary school and secondary schools will return on the same day.

James Wilding, academic principal at Claires Court School, reacted positively to the announcement.

He said: “We are delighted at the prospect all children can return to physical school very soon. We all know the importance of school settings for young people’s education, wellbeing, social interactions and development.

“We know that returning to school in a couple of week’s time, seeing their friends and teachers, will be a big boost, and the return in a couple of week’s time will I’m sure be very good for families.

“There is still some detail to work out, which is coming through from the Department for Education, so we are writing regularly to our families to keep them informed of arrangements and so they have all the information they need for children to return.”

In both primary and secondary schools, staff will be asked to take two COVID-19 tests every week at home to reduce the risk of bringing the virus into schools.

In the first week back, all secondary and college students will take three coronavirus tests. Schools will be able to decide how these tests are given out. After the first week, students will be provided with two tests per week to take at home.

In a message to parents, Gillian May, principal at BCA, thanked parents, staff and students for the hard work that went into remote learning over the past few months.

She said: “We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our teachers, staff and students who have successfully managed and maintained teaching and learning remotely.

“We are expecting an announcement from Ofqual this week regarding the arrangements for GCSEs. We are also awaiting definitive guidance on vocational and other examinations and assessments.”

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