Coronavirus: School leaders face up to 'enormous task' as schools close to majority of pupils

Schools across the UK are getting to grips with the “enormous task” now facing them as they shut their doors, plan for continuation of learning, and meet government demands to support key workers and vulnerable learners.

Yesterday (Wednesday, March 18), in the face of the continuing spread of coronavirus, governments across the UK confirmed the official closure of schools and colleges from Friday (March 20) or Monday (March 23) in Northern Ireland.

Education secretary Gavin Williamson gave a statement in the House of Commons on Wednesday evening, telling MPs that the scientific advice had now changed after there had been a “faster than anticipated” spike in the spread of the virus.

He added that schools were also finding it more and more difficult to remain open because of staff illness and self-isolation.

The spike has seen the number of UK cases jump to more than 2,600, although the government’s experts estimate that the actual number of cases could be 50,000. There have been 104 confirmed deaths as of Wednesday evening.

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