Education Settings: Wider Opening - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:32 pm on 11th June 2020.

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Photo of Lord Baker of Dorking Lord Baker of Dorking Conservative 5:32 pm, 11th June 2020

It is 80 days from today until September, when secondary schools are expected to open. Those are 80 days during which schools will be closed, padlocked and empty. I think that that is unacceptable. They should become learning centres during June, July, August and September. Will my noble friend encourage the Secretary of State to urge for the reopening of secondary schools as soon as possible? Will he also make representations to the Prime Minister and to the Cabinet that social distancing for children in schools should be reduced from 2 metres to 1 metre, because they are the least vulnerable members of our society? To protect them further, teachers, and any other staff who go into a school, should be tested for the virus daily, which it is now quite possible to do.