The return of students to schools across the nation has seen fresh outbreaks of coronavirus in several different areas.
Both, Boris Johnson and the Leader of the opposition Sir Keir Starmer insisted our children return to school. What they should have been doing was to recruit with the same national drive we witnessed for the NHS more teachers and teacher assistants, the extra staff needed to support reduced class sizes and the maintenance of social distancing, stagged start times for classes along with ensuring every child had access to a computer device as promised in case of local lockdowns. But most of all the promised ‘Track and trace app’ we were told was so important in fighting against COVID was up, working and rolled out.
Instead, we get the fiasco that is now endangering us all and escalating towards a second wave.
In spite of social distancing and hygiene measures, over 62 schools across Northern Ireland, England, Wales and Scotland have reported outbreaks of the virus.
A week after children began returning to classrooms for the first time since lockdown in March, a number of schools across parts of the UK have been battling outbreaks.
In Liverpool, an estimated 200 pupils and 21 staff are self-isolating following positive cases at five schools in the city. In Suffolk, five teachers tested positive for coronavirus, leading the school to close, and in the Midlands a school that was visited by the prime minister less than two weeks ago has had one teacher test positive.
In areas including Bradford, Leeds, Lancashire, Manchester, Nottingham and Leicester, handfuls of pupils and staff who tested positive for the virus have led to schools asking some pupils to self-isolate.
Many have been forced to close, while groups of pupils have been asked to self-isolate in classes where a case of the virus has been detected.
These are the areas and schools where cases have been reported.
Two staff members and one student at Dixons Academies Trust schools have tested positive for coronavirus.
The trust runs 12 academies in Bradford and Leeds, and has said that the cases came from three academies, though it has not named them.
Some staff members and students have been asked to isolate as a precaution.
Unity College in Burnley reported an infection in a year 7 pupil on the first day back at school.
He was immediately collected by his family, and all other 25 students in his bubble were sent home to self-isolate.
12 members of staff at St Cecila’s RC High School in Chapel Hill have been advised to self-isolate after a member of staff tested positive. No students have been affected.
An unknown number of students at Chesham Grammar School reportedly caught coronavirus last week – but the school had not yet re-opened when the cases were confirmed.
Following an outbreak of the virus at Hadden Hill Nursery, the nursery will be closed until September Friday 11.
At St Aidan’s primary school, a pupil or staff member tested positive.
However, the head teacher said there was no need to close parts of the school or ask children to self-isolate.
In Leeds, Bardsey Primary School will only welcome back years five and six after a member of staff tested positive for coronavirus.
The rest of the school will return home to do online learning.
The Winstanley School has urged parents to watch their children for symptoms closely after a confirmed case at the school.
An older pupil at The King David High School started to feel unwell in the last week of August with a temperature.
As a result, three students who came within two metres of the pupil will have to self-isolate for 14 days.
Though it’s not known how many students were affected, an outbreak has been confirmed at Sir William Borlase’s Grammar School.
A pupil at Ridgeway Primary Academy has been asked to self-isolate after testing positive for the virus, while those who were in close contact with the pupil have been asked to do the same.
Three members of staff and another employee at a Strood Academy school have been asked to self-isolate after a positive case was confirmed.
A teacher at Mellers Primary School has tested positive for coronavirus and the school forced to close as a result.
Northampton International Academy has reported that a member of staff has contracted coronavirus, and a bubble of students will now have to self-isolate.
Someone at the JCB Academy tested positive for coronavirus last week, prompting the school to close.
In Whitworth, several cases of coronavirus have been traced back to a single school – though the identity of the school is not yet known.
After a positive case at Oldmachar Academy in August, the school was closed for a professional deep-clean.
At Newhill Primary School, a student tested positive for the virus at the end of August.
In Bonnyrigg, a small number of students and staff have been contacted by Scotland’s Test and Protect team after a positive case at Lasswade High School.
A Grove Academy pupil caught coronavirus in Broughty Ferry, leading to the self-isolation of 14 people who had been in close contact.
A major outbreak of coronavirus has been linked to Kingspark School in Dundee.
Dundee’s St Clement’s RC Primary has also recommended self-isolation to some students after detection of a case.
Currie Community High School, Gracemount High, Dalkeith High School, James Gillespie High School, Preston Tower, Balbardie Primary School, Lasswade High School, Dalry Primary School and Granton Primary School have all seen confirmed cases of coronavirus in recent weeks.
Queen Anne High School in Dunfermline has recorded a positive case, with a second year class told to isolate until September 11. The pupil has been isolating and the area’s health board says there’s no evidence suggesting they’d transmitted the virus to others in school.
Newburgh Primary School in Cupar and nursery confirmed they’d had a positive case.
Kinmylies Primary School saw a member of staff test positive for the virus in August, but the school remained open.
Dalmarnock and St Martha’s primary schools and Govan High School have all recorded cases of coronavirus, with contact tracing underway.
Corpus Christi Primary school and Holy Cross Primary School have also seen an outbreak.
Bannerman High School and Aileymill Primary have similarly confirmed cases.
Hermitage Academy reported that two school pupils tested positive for coronavirus in recent weeks.
A positive case has been reported at St Anthony’s Primary School in Johnstone.
Wallace Primary, Mossvale Primary and Todholm Primary have all reported cases of coronavirus.
One pupil at Oakbank Primary School and a student at St John’s RC Academy tested positive for coronavirus in August.
Marr College and Prestwick Academy have recorded cases of coronavirus.
A student at St Matthew’s Academy was a confirmed case of coronavirus in August.
Granny Smith’s Nursery in Troon saw a confirmed case of coronavirus in recent weeks.
Cases of coronavirus have been reported at St Joseph’s College, De La Salle College and Larne Grammar School.
Self-isolation has been recommended by those affected.
Dozens of children at Jonesborough Primary School have been asked to self-isolate following the discovery of a coronavirus case at the end of August.
Holy Family Primary School has seen a case of coronavirus confirmed, with a primary school class asked to self-isolate as a result.
Caerphilly county is being placed under a local lockdown from 6pm on Tuesday, September 8.
The rate of new coronavirus cases in Wales has risen nearly four-fold in the last four days, with more than 300 new positive cases recorded since Friday.
The latest figures from Public Health Wales (PHW) confirmed on Monday, September 7 that there were 133 new cases recorded in Wales. It follows 98 new cases on Sunday and 77 on Saturday.
As of Monday afternoon, 16 Welsh schools have now confirmed they have been affected since reopening for the autumn term, with the latest confirmed case being at Dinas Powys Primary School in the Vale of Glamorgan.
The rising figure has prompted warnings of a possible local lockdown in Caerphilly, where officials say there has been an “alarming rise” in new infections during the past week.
Other schools affected include Ysgol Friars in Bangor, where a canteen worker tested positive for coronavirus this weekend and Ysgol Bro Edern in Cardiff, where a total of 30 children have been told to isolate for two weeks.