We haven’t really done a great job of protecting our young people during this pandemic have we?

Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 12:20 pm

Firstly we had them out of school for six months and the vast majority had hardly any regular interaction, let alone learning, through their schools.

Thousands in this city didn’t, and still don’t, even have access to a computer or reliable access so there was no chance of remote learning for them.

Some years went back towards the end of the academic year but there were last minute changes and the national advice was different from the local.

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LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 10: A child maintains social distancing measures while washing hands ahead of a lesson at Earlham Primary School, which is part of the Eko Trust on June 10, 2020 in London, England. As part of Covid-19 lockdown measures, Earlham Primary School is teaching smaller ‘bubbles’ of students, to help maintain social distancing measures. School staff have put into place many safety measures such as corridor signage for a one way system, regular supervised handwashing, temperature checks on arrival and enhanced cleaning regimes to keep pupils and staff as safe as possible. Bubbles of pupils are limited to six and each have their own well-ventilated space. The Government have announced it is set to drop plans for all English primary pupils to return to school before the end of the summer. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

That is fine, unless you find yourselves in a situation where the messages were opposing and the drive from Number 10 at that stage seemed to be that we should ignore everything other than what they said.

The plug wasn’t pulled on GCSE and A Level exams for a long time as the pandemic raged, so they were on hold, on tenterhooks just waiting to hear what was expected of them during one of the most stressful times in anybody’slife.

Then we completely made up their results and dismissed what the experts, their teachers, said about them. There was a u-turn but not quickly enough and the disruption was massive, while also being completely avoidable.

Now, we’ve sent them all back to school.

Within just a couple of days, many children are back home because several schools have already had confirmed cases of coronavirus.

Before we panic, that is how the system is supposed to work and our headteachers are doing exactly what they must. But none of this is filling us with confidence and it always feels like we could surely be tackling it more sensibly.

Anecdotal evidence comes in waves to all families and what we all hear on the rumour mill is not good. Have schools been given enough support and even enough handwash to keep children safe?

But it doesn’t stop there. Are we all taking enough care when we go shopping and are we all following the rules closely?

There is understandably a lot of anxiety around the relaxing of lockdown, schools returns and rises in the numbers of confirmed cases. It is down to all of us to be sensible.