Now TEN schools tell pupils to wear face masks for when they return in September in defiance of Government advice that they are unnecessary
- Ten schools will tell students to wear face masks when they are back in school
- Government advice says masks could increase virus transmission due to misuse
- One school has even told parents the masks are now part of the school uniform
Schools are flouting official guidance by requiring pupils to wear face masks when they return in September, The Mail on Sunday has learned.
While most head teachers are following Government advice that masks are unnecessary and could actually increase transmission of Covid-19 through misuse, at least ten schools have broken ranks to make the coverings either compulsory or ‘strongly encouraged’.
One comprehensive, Holmes Chapel in Cheshire, has even told parents the masks are now part of the school uniform and can be bought for £3 at a designated shop.
Mask-wearing is one of a raft of Covid-19 policies that may transform life in schools, according to a poll of 550 parents by lobby group UsForThem
Its July newsletter said: ‘The wearing of face coverings will be compulsory for students and staff when inside the school buildings.’
Yesterday the school pledged to ‘review our position regularly’.
All seven schools in the Bohunt multi-academy trust in Hampshire, West Sussex and Berkshire will be ‘strongly encouraged’ to wear masks in classrooms and corridors.
Fallibroome Academy in Macclesfield said it ‘expected’ students to wear masks in corridors. And Brighton College, where boarders pay up to £51,000 a year, has told parents the ‘current expectation’ was that masks would be required when pupils move around the site.
Mask-wearing is one of a raft of Covid-19 policies that may transform life in schools, according to a poll of 550 parents by lobby group UsForThem.
It found that 32 per cent of pupils will not be provided with a hot lunch and 40 per cent of parents said their children would be kept in the same classroom for most of the day and told only to face forward.
Co-founder Liz Cole said the group feared masks would ‘severely’ affect communication and ‘impact educational outcomes’.
The Department for Education said it was not recommending the use of masks in schools because the system of controls it had already laid out ‘adequately reduces the risk of transmission’.
Neil Strowger, Leader for Bohunt Education Trust said: ‘Children’s physical and mental health, safety and well-being are of prime concern. We are encouraging face coverings to be worn inside, as there is evidence to support their use, but are clear that students and staff are not required to wear them.’
One comprehensive, Holmes Chapel in Cheshire, has even told parents the masks are now part of the school uniform and can be bought for £3 at a designated shop