Coronavirus: Primary school for vulnerable children shut after two confirmed COVID-19 cases

Jimmy Nsubuga
·3-min read
Springfield Primary School, in Derby, has been claosed for 14 days (Picture: Google)
Springfield Primary School, in Derby, has been closed for 14 days (Picture: Google)

A primary school for vulnerable children has been shut for deep cleaning after two coronavirus cases were identified.

Springfield Primary School, in Derby, was closed for 14 days and those who came in contact with the infected people were told to self-isolate, the Mirror reported.

The school, which is operated by the Odyssey Collaborative Trust, had stayed open for children who were vulnerable and those belonging to key workers after others had shut in March.

Odyssey Collaborative Trust chief executive David Blackwell said: “The diagnosis was reported to us on Thursday and so the school will close now for 14 days because all of those who were attending are now in self-isolation and there is no need for us to be open.”

He added: “We will be deep cleaning the school and carrying out additional cleaning.

“But we are happy that the cases do not affect any other school in the trust and is confined to Springfield Primary.”

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Deputy General Secretary of the UK teachers trade union NASUWT, Patrick Roach, addresses a rally of the NUT and NASUWT trade unions at the Queen Elizabeth Conference Centre in Central London on September 14, 2013. The NUT and NASUWT represent the two largest teaching unions in the UK and are planning strike action in October 2013 protesting government reforms. AFP PHOTO / WILL OLIVER        (Photo credit should read WILL OLIVER/AFP via Getty Images)
General secretary of the NASUWT union Patrick Roach (Picture: Getty)

Meanwhile, teaching unions have insisted they are willing to work with the government to begin re-opening schools in England – provided it can be done safely without risking a renewed coronavirus outbreak.

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Pressure on the unions has increased after Children’s Commissioner for England Anne Longfield called on the two sides to “stop squabbling” and agree on a plan for a phased re-opening of primary schools from June 1.

She said she was in “despair” at the increasingly entrenched positions being taken by the two sides, in which the interests of children were being ignored.

However, Patrick Roach, general secretary of the NASUWT union, said members supported schools re-opening provided they could be made “COVID secure” and it would not put public health at risk.

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The teaching unions held talks on Friday with government scientific advisers amid concerns Prime Minister Boris Johnson was moving too quickly to ease the lockdown restrictions in England.

The meeting, however, was inconclusive with unions complaining it raised more questions than answers.

Roach said teachers needed “unequivocal guidance” from the government there would be “strong controls” in place which would satisfy both teachers and parents it was safe to return.

“We are continuing to say to government, but also to schools and employers, that we are here, we want to work with those employers to put plans in place to see whether schools can be ready for re-opening from June 1,” he told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme.

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