School term dates and holidays 2022: When are schools reopening?
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The Prime Minister and other devolved leaders have been adamant that schools will not close unless absolutely necessary after a series of closures over the course of the pandemic. Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi said he would do “everything” in his power to make sure schools don’t close again but that he couldn’t say for certain if this would be the case.
He told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show: “We are absolutely working to make sure that all schools are open, that they’re protected.
“We know that a booster works. Get boosted, protect yourself, protect your community and let’s get through this and transition this from pandemic to endemic.”
Nonetheless, under current Government guidance, UK schools are expected to offer in-person teaching when they return in 2022.
But school leaders have warned that “difficult decisions” would have to be made in January because of the surge in coronavirus infections caused by the Omicron variant.
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Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, saidMr Barton said that schools would do their “very best to minimise the impact of disruption on pupils, as they always do”.
“Schools and colleges were already seeing significant levels of staff absence caused by Covid-19 before the Christmas holidays and it may be that the impact of the Omicron variant will make matters worse in the new term.”
Mr Barton said schools would do their “very best to minimise the impact of disruption on pupils, as they always do” but added: “The reality is that if there aren’t enough staff available difficult decisions may need to be made.
“Where staffing levels are severely impacted this may involve having to send home some classes or year groups for short periods of time to learn remotely rather than teaching them in-school.”
Mr Barton has warned the Government simply isn’t going far enough to protect pupils and staff while the virus is circulating so prominently.
He said: “The Government must take much more concerted action to minimise the disruption to education, including the provision of Government-funded air cleaning units in all schools and colleges that need them; a public information campaign to encourage twice-weekly lateral flow home testing among eligible pupils; and an improved offer of financial assistance to schools and colleges for supply cover costs, which is more accessible than the meagre scheme that is currently in place.”
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What are the term dates for 2022?
UK schools are currently being advised to reopen next term as normal, and regardless of whether online learning is brought in or not, schooling dates will remain the same.
Term dates also vary in each UK country. You can check when the term starts and ends using this GOV.UK service.
All you need to do is enter your postcode and select your child’s school to see reopening dates.
If you live in Scotland, you can use the Scottish Government’s service here.
How likely is it schools will close?
A Department for Education spokesperson said: “We know children and young people want to be in the classroom and it is the very best place for their education and well-being, which is why protecting face-to-face education continues to be an absolute priority.
“In response to rising cases and the Omicron variant we have asked older students and staff to wear face coverings in communal areas, and the Education Secretary has written to all education staff to explain what we’re doing to support the workforce, boost supply teacher capacity, and keep children in school.
“We strongly encourage students, staff and families to keep testing regularly and get their booster jab – or second jab if they are 12 to 15 – as soon as possible.”
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