Reclose schools and colleges due to increase in COVID-19 cases

Close down schools and colleges due to the increase in COVID-19 cases. We are seeing cases of students and teachers catching the virus since schools have reopened.

428,511 Signatures

Status: Open
Opened: 22 Sep 2020, 11:43 a.m.
Last 24 hours signatures : 17
Estimated Final Signatures: 479,983

This content was generated for your convenience by Parallel Parliament and does not form part of the official record.
Recent Documents related to Reclose schools and colleges due to increase in COVID-19 cases

1. 10 Oct 2018 - School and college funding - oral evidence
15/07/2019 - Inquiry: School and college funding - Education Committee
- View source

Found: President, Association of Colleges; James Kewin, Deputy Chief Executive, Sixth Form Colleges Association; and

2. London Councils - written evidence
19/06/2018 - Inquiry: School and college funding - Education Committee
- View source

Found: scale and impact of funding pressures on schools and colleges, and would be happy to give evidence at

3. COVID-19 series: briefing on local areas’ SEND provision, November 2020
15/12/2020 - Ofsted
- View source

Found: Published: December 2020 COVID -19 series: briefing on special educational needs and disabilities

4. Coronavirus (COVID-19): attendance in education and early years settings
21/04/2020 - Department for Education
- View source

Found: Published: April 2020 Coronavirus ( COVID -19) attendance in education and early years settings

5. Sixth Form Colleges Association - written evidence
19/06/2018 - Inquiry: School and college funding - Education Committee
- View source

Found: Sixth Form Colleges AssociationFUN0041Written evidence submitted on behalf of Sixth Form Colleges Association  Executive

Latest Documents
Recent Speeches related to Reclose schools and colleges due to increase in COVID-19 cases

1. Education Route Map: Covid-19
25/02/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: national education route map for schools and colleges in response to the covid-19 outbreak.I thank the - Speech Link
2: national educational route map out of covid-19 for schools and colleges, as is the title of the debate. We - Speech Link
3: past, before covid-19, we had things called summer schools. We have not had summer schools for the past - Speech Link

2. Education Return and Awarding Qualifications in 2021
25/02/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: sight. As the House is by now aware, the rates of covid infection have come down enough for us to let children - Speech Link

3. Education: Return in January
30/12/2020 - Commons Chamber

1: children is an absolute priority and that keeping schools open is uppermost in all our plans. The - Speech Link

4. Educational Settings: January 2021 Return and Funding
17/12/2020 - Written Statements

1: as normally as possible during the coronavirus (covid-19) outbreak, and we have continued to work with - Speech Link

5. Education Settings: Wider Opening
11/06/2020 - Lords Chamber

1: over two and a half months since we asked schools, further education colleges and nurseries to remain open - Speech Link
2: wider reopening of schools. By the end of the week, more than half of primary schools were taking pupils - Speech Link
3: to work with the sector to make sure that any schools experiencing difficulties are supported to open - Speech Link

6. Covid-19: Impact on Schools and Exams
07/12/2020 - Westminster Hall

1: Committee, Getting the grades they’ve earned: Covid-19: the cancellation of exams and ‘calculated’ grades - Speech Link
2: 316404 and 549015, relating to the impact of Covid-19 on schools and exams. It is a pleasure to serve - Speech Link

7. Oral Answers to Questions
22/06/2020 - Commons Chamber

1: provide time in schools for pupils to catch up on education missed as a result of the covid-19 lockdown. - Speech Link
2: half-past 8 we saw a support package only for schools. Is it not time for the Secretary of State to get - Speech Link
3: did—we are driving up standards in education and schools. That is why we are spending an extra £1 billion - Speech Link
4: exam season from May to July, to allow students and teachers more time in the classroom to complete the - Speech Link
5: tutoring, but the Secretary of State is aware that schools with already badly overstretched budgets will have - Speech Link

8. School Closures: Support for Pupils
13/01/2021 - Westminster Hall

1: senior leadership teams in all our local schools and colleges. Like our health professionals, they are - Speech Link

9. Oral Answers to Questions
06/10/2020 - Commons Chamber

1: Does my right hon. Friend share my delight at seeing on that list a new rebuild for West Suffolk Hospital - Speech Link
2: about attending hospitals, could those be used as covid-secure environments for cancer analysis and treatment - Speech Link
3: have played a very important role in responding to covid, and we have a contract with them to be able to - Speech Link
4: UK have taken to limit the spread of coronavirus since the outbreak in March. As we approach the winter - Speech Link
5: behoves us all to make the case that controlling this virus not only reduces the number of deaths directly from - Speech Link
6: Royal Surrey County Hospital on Friday to see up close the robotics that are used in many soft tissue cancer - Speech Link
7: cancer backlog that has grown so greatly under covid, so it was alarming that despite those ministerial - Speech Link
8: increasingly in community hubs, which are safer from a covid point of view and, for the long term, will mean - Speech Link
9: ensure that patients with illnesses other than covid-19 can access the treatments and procedures that - Speech Link

10. Oral Answers to Questions
18/01/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: excessively high international student fees, many EU students will choose to study elsewhere, so how will the - Speech Link
2: globe as to how we can expand opportunities for students. Yes, there are many, many brilliant higher education - Speech Link
3: upon students is only adding to the anxiety that they already feel because of the impact that covid-19 - Speech Link
4: We have set clear strengthened expectations for schools and further education providers, and our “Get help - Speech Link

Latest Speeches
Recent Questions related to Reclose schools and colleges due to increase in COVID-19 cases
1. Students: Coronavirus
asked by: Virendra Sharma
20/07/2020
... what plans he has to help protect older and more vulnerable students at greater risk from covid-19 infection when attending reopened further education colleges in September 2020.

2. GCE A-level: Assessments
asked by: John McDonnell
22/05/2020
... what guidance his Department has issued to (a) schools and (b) colleges on assessing the grades of students that are due to resit A-level examinations.

3. Coronavirus: Wansbeck
asked by: Ian Lavery
16/10/2020
... how many children in Wansbeck constituency have been tested for covid-19 since schools reopened.

4. Students: Loans
asked by: Kate Osborne
21/04/2020
... whether students will receive maintenance loans whilst their schools or colleges are closed during the covid-19 outbreak.

5. Teachers: Training
asked by: Jim Cunningham
04/11/2019
... what steps he is taking to train and support senior leadership teams in schools to support their students after a terrorist attack close to the school or homes of their students.

Latest Questions

You may be interested in these active petitions

1. Prioritise special school staff in Covid 19 vaccinations. - 29,349 signatures
2. Prioritise teachers, school and childcare staff for Covid-19 vaccination - 506,176 signatures
3. Fully fund schools for Covid-19 costs and provide relief for loss of income - 29,268 signatures
4. Permit larger weddings based on guests testing negative for COVID-19 - 64,341 signatures
5. Ensure student nurses and midwives are paid for working during Covid-19 - 35,875 signatures

To protect teachers and pupils and their families.


Top 10 Constituencies

Naz Shah Portrait
2,700 signatures (0.63%)
Sam Tarry Portrait
2,637 signatures (0.62%)
Stephen Timms Portrait
2,594 signatures (0.61%)
Imran Hussain Portrait
2,185 signatures (0.51%)
Lyn Brown Portrait
2,176 signatures (0.51%)
Kate Hollern Portrait
2,058 signatures (0.48%)
Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi Portrait
2,051 signatures (0.48%)
View All Constituency Signatures

Top 50 Constituencies by Number of Signatures

79,287 signatures - 19.0% of total

Responsive image

Government Response

Government’s priority is that all pupils remain in school and college full-time. For the vast majority of young people, the benefits of being in the classroom far outweigh the low risk from COVID-19.


Attending school and college is vital for children and young people’s education and for their wellbeing. Time out of school or college is detrimental for children’s and young people’s cognitive and academic development, particularly for disadvantaged children and young people. This impact can affect both current levels of learning and children’s and young people’s future ability to learn.

Schools and colleges have been open to all students since the start of the autumn term. On average, over 99% of schools are open each day and 99% of Further Education colleges have been open each week. Approximately 89% of pupils on roll were in attendance in state-funded schools as of 5 November.

The risk to children and young people themselves of becoming severely ill from coronavirus (COVID-19) is very low and there are negative health impacts of being out of school or college. Senior clinicians, including the Chief Medical Officers of all four nations, still advise that school is the very best place for children and young people to be, and so they should continue to attend. We have taken a national decision to prioritise education during the current period of national restrictions in order to avoid any further reduction in face to face education for children and young people.

Schools and colleges have implemented a range of protective measures to minimise risk of transmission.

We published guidance to support schools (1*) and colleges (2*) to welcome back all children and young people from the start of the autumn term. Our guidance for schools and colleges sets out measures which provide a framework for school and college leaders to put in place proportionate protective measures for children, young people and staff, which also ensure that all students receive a high quality education and training that enables them to thrive and progress. This includes the public health advice schools and colleges must follow to minimise the risks of coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission.

The measures set out in the department’s guidance to minimise the risk of transmission in schools and colleges has been endorsed by Public Health England. The measures in place include regular handwashing, promoting good respiratory hygiene, keeping groups separate and maintaining distance and minimising contact between individuals.

Schools and colleges must ensure they understand the NHS Test and Trace process. Anyone who displays symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) can and should get a test. Essential workers, which includes anyone involved in education or childcare, have priority access to testing.

There is reassuring evidence from recent ONS data that school and college staff are not at higher risk than those working in other sectors. On 31 October the Prime Minister announced new national restrictions during the period of 5 November to 2 December to control the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). In line with these restrictions, staff who are clinically extremely vulnerable are advised to work from home and not to go into work. Staff should talk to their employers about how they will be supported, including to work from home where possible, during the period of national restrictions.

More evidence has emerged that shows there is a very low risk of children and young people becoming very unwell from coronavirus (COVID-19), even for children and young people with existing health conditions. Most children and young people originally identified as clinically extremely vulnerable no longer need to follow original shielding advice. Children and young people who live with someone who is clinically extremely vulnerable, but who are not clinically extremely vulnerable themselves, should still attend education. Those children and young people whose doctors have confirmed they are still clinically extremely vulnerable are advised not to attend education whilst the national restrictions are in place (3*).

If parents have concerns about their child or young person attending school or college because they consider they or members of their household may have particular risk factors, they should discuss these with their school or college.

We will continue to keep the evidence, particularly on the transmission rate and wider risks on health, under review so that we can continue to support schools to remain open and provide the education that children deserve.

(1*)https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools

(2*)https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-further-education-provision/what-fe-colleges-and-providers-will-need-to-do-from-the-start-of-the-2020-autumn-term

(3*)https://www.gov.uk/guidance/education-and-childcare-settings-new-national-restrictions-from-5-november-2020#schools

Department for Education


MPs spoken contributions during 7 Dec 2020 petition debate