Parents outraged by primary school's 'crazy' lockdown reopening plans

18 May 2020, 11:15 | Updated: 18 May 2020, 16:37

A school has sparked backlash over its proposed reopening measures (stock images)
A school has sparked backlash over its proposed reopening measures (stock images). Picture: Getty

The school suggested a number of methods by which they could reopen in June, sparking backlash from parents.

Parents have been left shocked after a primary school suggested that pupils could stand in hoops during playtime and have scheduled toilet breaks when it reopens.

Read more: Boris Johnson confirms primary schools may reopen on June 1 as he delivers plan for phasing out lockdown

In a now-deleted Facebook post, Holywell Village First School (HVFS), in Northumberland, unveiled a number of proposed methods by which it could take to keep pupils safe, reports Metro.

Many students have been homeschooled during the lockdown period (stock image)
Many students have been homeschooled during the lockdown period (stock image). Picture: Getty

Other suggestions included the removal of toys and books in classrooms, and getting kids to clean themselves if they were to fall over.

According to the report, the post read: "If they fall over or have a toileting accident they will be encouraged to change themselves and clean their scrape or cut.

"We have sourced PPE (following the COVID 19 guidance for Educational Settings) which is for use only for staff protection should a child vomit, not for trips, falls or scrapes.

Read more: Kids won't be sprayed with disinfectant when schools reopen, Matt Hancock confirms

"If it is not possible for the child to clean themselves in the event of an accident, the parent will be called to collect them so they can do that at home."

The post was deleted following backlash from parents, with many expressing their fury at the proposed plan.

Holly Willoughby asks for reassurance from Matt Hancock that children will be safe at school

Mum-of-three Kristina Richards, 29, labelled the plans as 'crazy', according to the report.

She added to Metro: "How on earth can children in reception and year one have an allocated toilet time? They are young kids and if they need to go to the toilet then they need to.

"No child aged 4/5 should have to clean up their own cuts. And if they can’t do it then a parent will be called. What if that parent is now back to work?

"Does that mean this child has to wait maybe an hour until a parent arrives to change their child’s soiled clothes or clean their bleeding legs? It’s ludicrous."

There were also concerns that there would be no hot meals and kids would be expected to wear a clean coat every day, which not everyone can afford to do.

Another parent added: "What level of psychological damage will this do to kids? No toys in the classrooms, no soft furnishings, no unnecessary furniture!!!

"They might as well put these babies is solitary confinement.

"This is no way to school children and it’s no way for teachers to have to try and teach.

"This is totally unacceptable."

Schools could reopen for some pupils on 1 June (stock image)
Schools could reopen for some pupils on 1 June (stock image). Picture: Getty

Cath McEvoy-Carr, Executive Director of Adults and Children's Services at Northumberland Council, told “We understand the concerns of parents and carers, but keeping our pupils and staff safe in schools in these unprecedented times is our top priority.

"We know that all our headteachers are carefully considering how they can safely re-open their schools to pupils and staff. We will be working closely with them to review the guidance provided by the Government, and how they can implement these new safety procedures and take the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of their children, their families and their employees.”

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said on Saturday (16 May) that the phased reopening of schools from June 1 will go ahead as planned if coronavirus cases continue to fall.

Speaking at the daily press conference, he said: "We have been quite clear all along, that we’d only start inviting more children back into schools when our five key tests have been met. That position has not changed, nor will it, and it is what is guiding all of our actions.

"But we do want to see children back in school because we know how much children grow and benefit from being in school. We can now start for planning for a very limited return to school for some pupils, potentially as early as next month."

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have all refused to back the reopening of schools - and Liverpool and Hartlepool councils have told schools to remain shut.


Education secretary reveals children will be expected to continue home-learning through the summer holidays