Corby school becomes first in town to shut its doors tomorrow over ‘safety concerns’

The head said he cannot guarantee the safety of children
Woodnewton will close tomorrow in defiance of government adviceWoodnewton will close tomorrow in defiance of government advice
Woodnewton will close tomorrow in defiance of government advice

Woodnewton: A Learning Academy has announced that it will not open its doors tomorrow (Monday, January 4) over coronavirus concerns.

The eleventh hour statement came this evening just hours before children were due to return after the Christmas break and following a day of mounting pressure from unions who have demanded the government shuts schools to all children.

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A letter to parents from headteacher Glyn Rushton said: “We have made the very difficult decision to revert to online learning for the majority of our pupils from tomorrow.

”We are extremely sorry for the very late notice. We do not underestimate the impact that this can have on families, however, we are unable to provide in-academy learning in a way that is sufficiently safe if all children are in attendance.”

There are thought to be around 950 children at Woodnewton, in Rowlett Road. The school had consulted with parents during the day today and had warned that they may be unable to reopen given the conflicting union and government advice.

Earlier this week Corby and the rest of Northamptonshire were moved into tier 4 amid spiralling Covid-19 case rates.

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson reiterated this morning in an interview with the BBC’s Andrew Marr that it was safe for children to go back to school.

But opposition leader Keir Starmer said he wanted an immediate lockdown across the country.

Mr Rushton said vulnerable children and those whose parents are keyworkers will be able to attend if necessary, adding: “We completely appreciate the dilemma for all families.”

He said the decision would be reviewed on a daily basis.