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Here's what pupils can expect in the classroom as they return to school



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Sponsored Editorial: Produced in association with the UK Government

Millions of children and young people will be starting the new academic year next month.

Although caution is still needed, the coming academic year can be approached with optimism.

As the new term nears, we talk to parents, pupils and teachers to discover what they are most looking forward to.

NEW SCHOOL RULES! Thousands of pupils are excited by return to a more familiar school routine
NEW SCHOOL RULES! Thousands of pupils are excited by return to a more familiar school routine

For schools and colleges, easing of restrictions means ...

  1. Bubbles are no longer advised
  2. No social distancing
  3. Under-18s exempt from self-isolation
  4. Assemblies and sport can resume
  5. After-school clubs can restart

Rapid Covid-19 testing will remain, with pupils taking two tests a week in order to control the spread of the virus. There are huge benefits of testing – it’s quick, offers peace of mind and helps to protect friends and family.

GLAD TO BE BACK: Pupils can’t wait to get back to a regular routine in the classroom and mix with all their mates, not just their bubbles, as the Government eases restrictions in schools and colleges
GLAD TO BE BACK: Pupils can’t wait to get back to a regular routine in the classroom and mix with all their mates, not just their bubbles, as the Government eases restrictions in schools and colleges

Recruitment company managing director mum Kelly Dunn and her two children Bobby and Darcey are all looking forward to the new term.

Bobby, aged 16, starts his A-level courses at college soon.

“Going to college is a new start, a fresh start, a change of scenery,” said Bobby, set to study music, media and history or psychology.

“It is closing the door on school and opening a door on a new life,” added Bobby, an accomplished guitarist.

His five-year-old sister Darcey will join Year One of the primary school in the North Yorkshire village where the family live.

“I am looking forward to being able to play with all my friends in the playground," said Darcey.

"I also like playing in the different areas of the classroom.”

Mum Kelly added: “Darcey will be able to mix with all the children, not just her bubble, in the playground. We are also looking forward to Bobby’s A-level years because they are as important as GCSEs. It changes you from a child into a young adult. It is that life-changing couple of years.”

LOOKING FORWARD TO NEW TERM: Kelly Dunn with her teenage son Bobby and five-year-old daughter Darcey
LOOKING FORWARD TO NEW TERM: Kelly Dunn with her teenage son Bobby and five-year-old daughter Darcey

A Birmingham headteacher is excited about the term ahead.

Enass Al-Ani, who oversees 1,200 pupils at Small Heath Leadership Academy, said: “Students will be able to enjoy the full school experience, mixing with their friends and not just with their year group.

“It’s going to have such a positive impact on their wellbeing and their experience of high quality education. The staff have done an incredible job.

“They’re very excited about going back to near normal and their own classrooms and interacting in a way they need to.”

HAPPY DAYS AHEAD: Enass Al-Ani, headteacher
HAPPY DAYS AHEAD: Enass Al-Ani, headteacher

VACCINE FOR PUPILS AGED 16-17

Young people aged 16 to 17 in England have been offered a first dose of Covid-19 vaccine to give them vital protection before returning to school.

Teenager Bobby Dunn, who has had his first jab, encouraged others to get vaccinated.

“Once they announced it, I said as soon as I got the chance to get the vaccine I was having it,” said the 16-year-old.

Find your nearest centre through the ‘grab a jab’ NHS online walk-in finder



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