Aylesbury school partially closes 'to prioritise safety and wellbeing' in wake of coronavirus pandemic

The Mandeville School in Aylesbury has sent a letter to parents informing them it will be closed to all but year 11 students from Wednesday morning due to issues resulting from the coronavirus crisis.

Tuesday, 17th March 2020, 7:55 pm
Updated Tuesday, 17th March 2020, 7:56 pm

The letter states: “There now presents a situation where temporary partial closure of the school becomes necessary due to the challenges of maintaining staffing capacity in the current situation.

“This is not a decision that has been taken lightly, but one that we have made to prioritise the safety and wellbeing of our community.”

The letter goes on to inform parents that teachers have prepared work online for students to continue their learning from home.

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The Mandeville assembly hall

The UK is now the only European country aside from Belarus that hasn't closed its schools.

Despite evidence for the effectiveness of closing schools in reducing death rates in a community, particularly if the closure is proactive as opposed to reactive (i.e. if the school is closed before someone at the school gets sick), the UK Government has chosen not to enforce closures, as of 7pm on Tuesday 17 March.

In his daily briefing today, Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke of how infectious the disease is, said that it can be deadly, and reiterated the necessity of increasing the “physical distance between ourselves.”

Yesterday, Mr Johnson beckoned people to work from home if possible and to avoid pubs and restaurants.

Social media is ablaze with people questioning how the call for social distancing is consistent with keeping schools open.