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The Trust that runs most Haverhill schools says the 'safety of children and staff will come first' when they return to their classroom

The trust that runs eight of the ten schools in Haverhill has reacted to the plans outlined by Prime Minster Boris Johnson yesterday for the potential phased re-opening of schools.

The Government announcement said that if conditions allow there may be a phased reopening of primary schools from June 1 with children in Reception classes and in Years 1 and 6 to be the first to return.

Unity Schools Partnership chief executive, Tim Coulson, said it hoped to welcome more children back to the 25 schools it runs in Suffolk and Essex "when it is safe to do so".

Dr Tim Coulson, chief executive of Unity Schools Partnership
Dr Tim Coulson, chief executive of Unity Schools Partnership

Mr Coulson said: "It is hoped that secondary pupils taking exams next year will also have some time in school this term – we assume this means those in Years 10 and 12. We await further information from Government about the details.

"We will be closely following Government guidance that we expect about the possible phased reopening of schools.

"The safety of both children and staff are paramount to us and we will be working over the next few weeks on plans to maximise whatever expectations are set out for social distancing in schools.

"We will be contacting parents about the detailed arrangements that will be needed and when children in different classes will be invited back to school.

"We do not yet have plans in place that will mean all children in the year groups, prioritised by Government, will have school every day.

"We will be talking with trade unions and colleagues in other schools in our areas and will be contacting parents again as soon as we have more information.

"Not all our staff are able to return to school yet and we will be making sure that we have sufficient staff for the number of children that will be in school.

"We recognise that parents of children in reception classes and in Years 1 and 6 may be anxious about what schools partially reopening will mean and we will welcome their thoughts on our plans as they emerge in the coming week.

"We will provide more information as we have it about expectations for other year groups, and the children who have already been attending school."

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