National Education Union

'We need reassurance that it's safe to reopen'

Bob Dale

BBC Live reporter

Some headteachers and teaching union leaders in Sussex say they are sceptical about the government's plans to try and reopen schools by 1 June.

The Prime Minister said the reopening would be phased, starting with reception classes and moving upwards, with class sizes limited to 15.

But the head of a Brighton infant school told BBC Radio Sussex that would be a problem in itself.

I would have two-thirds of my school back in and I would have to make sure that they could be taught in those proposed bubbles. I don't think I have enough space"

Hildi MitchellHeadteacher, Downs Infant School

Another primary head said he's concerned that more evidence is needed that it is safe before schools can reopen.

We really do need reassurance that it will be safe to go back by June the 1st, or parents will vote with their feet and not bring their children to school"

David EthertonHeadteacher, St Nicholas and St Mary Primary School, Shoreham

The government has said that parents who don't bring their children back to school won't be fined.

The country's biggest education union says that despite most teachers wanting to get back to work, there should be more thought over the 1 June target.

It's not so much about children catching the virus themselves, it's about them spreading it, and the government has not shown that they don't spread it".

Phil ClarkeEast Sussex branch secretary, National Education Union