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23 February 2021, 10:06
The government has stated that face masks will be required in some secondary and higher education settings.
Secondary school students in England will be advised to wear face masks when they return on 8 March, the government has announced.
It is thought that the advice will only apply to a time-limited period, and will be combined with twice-weekly rapid Covid testing.
The advice comes as part of the government's lockdown roadmap, with official guidance stating: "The government recommends that the use of face coverings in higher education, further education and secondary schools is extended for a limited period to all indoor environments – including classrooms – unless 2m social distancing can be maintained."
When schools were reopened after the previous lockdown, Secondary school pupils had to wear face coverings in the corridors, but these were previously not required in the classrooms.
Speaking about the reopening on schools in the House of Commons yesterday, Nr Johnson said: "All the evidence shows that classrooms are the best places for our young people to be and that’s why I’ve always said that schools would be the last to close and the first to reopen.
"And based on our assessment of the current data against the four tests, I can tell the house that two weeks from today, pupils and students in all schools and further education settings can safely return to face-to-face teaching, supported by twice-weekly testing of secondary school and college pupils.
"Families and childcare bubbles will also be encouraged to get tested regularly. Breakfast and after-school clubs can also reopen and other children’s activities including sport can restart where necessary to help parents to work."