“Children have suffered significant harms from Covid-19. In just the past two months there have been over 2,300 hospitalisations of under 18s in England. There are an estimated 34,000 children living with long covid in the UK already, with 22,000 reporting significant impacts on their day to day activities, 7,000 of whom have had symptoms for more than a year. Up to one in seven of those infected are expected to have persisting symptoms at 12-15 weeks. Long Covid can be associated with multisystem disease in some children, including persistent cognitive symptoms. SARS-CoV-2 is a neurotrophic and pro-inflammatory virus with neuroinvasive potential that can infect the brain, with structural brain changes having been observed in adults, including those with mild infection. Allowing mass infection of children is therefore reckless. “
Schools are reopening and Government wants to pretend Covid is fixed. But this stance puts the lives of children, their families, and teaching staff at risk.
Even children and families with serious medical conditions that make them especially vulnerable to Covid are expected to return to school – without any protective measures. Government’s policy requires no contact tracing by schools, no bubbles, and tells families who are vulnerable to just “follow the same guidance as everyone else.”
Parents who are frightened of what this means for their kids or vulnerable family members face fines or prosecution if they keep their kids at home until schools are made safe. And some schools and local authorities are bullying families into deregistering children.
We don’t think this state of affairs is lawful – and it is certainly not right. We commissioned written legal advice from leading educational specialists Fiona Scolding QC and Yaaser Vanderman – and promised we would publish it. It can now be accessed here.