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UK News

More than one million children in England absent from school last week over virus


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More than one million children in England were off school last week due to coronavirus-related reasons, official figures show.

It is a new record high since schools reopened in March.

Live COVID updates from the UK and around the world

Data released by the Department for Education shows around 14.3% of all pupils in state-funded schools were absent from class on 15 July – a total of 1.05 million.

This is up from 11.2% on 8 July and 8.5% on 1 July.

Of these, 773,700 pupils were self-isolating due to possible contact with a case of coronavirus from inside school, while 160,300 pupils after possibly coming into contact with a COVID-19 case outside school.

A total of 47,200 pupils had a confirmed case of coronavirus, and 34,800 pupils were absent as a result of COVID school closures.

More on Covid

Around 34,500 pupils had a suspected case of coronavirus, the data showed.

Meanwhile an estimated 6.6% of teachers and school leaders were absent due to COVID on 15 July, an increase from 8 July (5.4%) and 1 July (4.2%).

For teaching assistants and other staff, the proportion was estimated to be 6.4% on 15 July, up from 5.2% on 8 July and 3.9% on 1 July.

Earlier this month, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson announced the school bubble system is being scrapped in England and only those who test positive for COVID-19 will have to self-isolate.

From 16 August pupils will no longer have to self-isolate if they are a close contact of someone who tests positive for coronavirus.

Schools will also no longer need to stagger start and finish times, and children who are contacted by Track and Trace as being a contact of someone who has tested positive will be advised to take a PCR test.

 Sky News

© Sky News 2021

Written by: Rother Radio News

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