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Primary school to be 1st in country to make kids wear face masks at all times

A PRIMARY school is set to be the first in the country to make kids wear a mask.

Children heading back to the Milton Keynes school in September will be required to wear a mask or plastic face shield – apart from when eating lunch or going on daily walks.

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Premier Academy Eaton Mill Primary School’s headteacher, Warren Harrison, told parents in a newsletter of the changes – warning them they also had to wear a mask if they wanted to come into the school.

He wrote: “All staff, children, parents, carers and visitors must don a mask when on site or they will not be allowed access.

“Face coverings are not acceptable. We recommend the N95 or surgical masks.

“Once in their bubbles, children and those members of staff in close contact with children will change from a mask to a named shield which will be supplied by the school. Anyone may however stay in a mask if they prefer.”

He said reception aged kids didn’t have to wear a mask, but hoped parents would encourage them to.

Any pupil needing the loo or wanting to move between classes has to keep their face mask or shield on.

He added: “When not in the classroom, masks may be removed for eating purposes and when outside the building during the bubble’s daily walks. All cross bubble contact between children and staff and staff and staff will need all parties to don a mask.

“Children will be dismissed in masks to adults wearing masks.”

The letter sent out on Monday added the measures would be reviewed monthly, but that the head expected other schools to follow suit and introduce the same practice.

Speaking to the Sun Online, Mr Harrison added that the new rules have been brought in because more evidence suggests the virus is an aerosol spread disease.

He also said the set up of the school means a one-way system with social distancing instead of masks would be a struggle, and that the virus and safety fears has led to five staff resignations.

It comes after he wrote a message to parents several weeks back, saying: “None of us can afford to be complacent.

“And if you are not taking Covid-19 seriously then we need to find you a school which better matches your view of the world. Maybe try Hogwarts.”

Some parents at the Ofted Outstanding-rated Premier Academy criticised the mask decision.

One parent told the MK Citizen: “I believe this makes them the first primary school in England to do this, and it is contrary to government guidance.

“We have applied to move our child due to this and their decision to cancel breakfast and after school clubs, which makes it impossible for us to get them to school.”

But another said: “It sounds extreme, but at least I know my child is protected. It will be very difficult to persuade a five-year-old to wear a mask or shield all day though.”

It comes as the number of coronavirus infections in the UK rose by 812 yesterday as the rolling seven day average for cases fell for the fourth day in a row.

Department of Health figures show an average of 1,043 Brits have tested positive for Covid-19 each day in the last seven days — down from a six-week high of 1,097 on August 15.  

It mean at least 321,098 people have now caught the bug in Britain.



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