Ben Webster-Whiting, a local teacher at a Maidstone secondary school, has endorsed Liberal Democrat calls for caution to be exercised in implementing the re-opening of local schools.
"As a Maidstone teacher, I, like all teachers, want what is best for children and ultimately that is face to face contact in schools, but only when it is safe to do so. I can see how difficult it will be to ensure pupils and staff have adequate protection. It is good to see the British Medical Association supporting the Education Unions on this. In the meantime, teachers are continuing to support students of all year groups on a virtual basis, and those of key-workers and vulnerable students in school under safe conditions."
Responding to reports that the Government will be releasing their plan on reopening schools next week, Liberal Democrat Education spokesperson Layla Moran had said:
"Reopening schools can’t be a top-down affair, with politicians failing to consult with those who run our schools. The number and type of risks is complex and will differ from school to school - therefore it is vital the concerns of teaching staff are heard.
"The Government needs to work with school leaders now, not later, to put this in place ahead of time. Only when school staff have the PPE they need, as per their risk assessment, should they be able to reopen.
"I am glad that the Government have listened to calls from the Liberal Democrats and others to publish a plan for opening schools, but they must start to work with schools urgently. They must begin assessing the risks and minimising the threat of the virus to children, staff and parents for when they reopen."