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Primary schools in England returned this week, but levels of attendance are ranging from 40% to 70% as some schools remain closed and many parents are choosing not to send their children back. This was reflected in a survey from the National Foundation for Educational Research that suggested almost 50% of children would be kept at home by parents. The situation in primary schools is very mixed across the country as some local authorities are yet to bring back more pupils, some schools have limited space, some are still training, and some do not have all of their staff available. The school day for those children who have returned is very different with staggered drop off times, small lesson groups of no more than 15 children, and regular hand washing throughout the day. A survey of 4,500 parents with young children, carried out by the Early Years Alliance, also shows a mixed uptake of nurseries and early years provisions. 65% of nurseries and childcare settings said they are planning to open from 1 June and only 45% of parents are planning to take up places. Tulip Siddiq, UK Labour Party‚Äôs shadow minister for children and early years, said the lower demand for childcare places would put nurseries under “extraordinary financial pressure” and “millions of childcare places could be lost in this crisis”. Read more here.

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