Norfolk schools close early for summer as Covid strikes

Costessey Primary School, Three Mile Lane, Norwich. Picture: Jamie Honeywood.

Costessey Primary School, Three Mile Lane, Norwich. - Credit: Archant

Positive Covid cases have seen schools in Norfolk forced to close early for the summer holidays. 

Costessey Primary School confirmed the school was closed due to a number of positive cases impacting on staff attendance and forcing a number of pupils to self-isolate.

The school in Three Mile Lane, which has 630 pupils and is part of the Evolution Academy Trust, said it would not reopen before the end of term on Wednesday. 

Principal Katie Lawson said: “We are resorting back to online learning at home. It’s incredibly sad that children won’t be in for the last few days. 

“We are currently trying to put in place as much as we can in terms of transitioning into new classes and saying goodbye to the teachers and the children they are currently working with.

Katie Lawson, principal of Costessey Primary School, outside the new extension. Picture: SOPHIE WYLL

Katie Lawson, principal of Costessey Primary School. - Credit: SOPHIE WYLLIE

“We are doing as much as we can to do that remotely because we know it is really important for those children.”

John Grant School in Caister-on-Sea, which caters for pupils with complex needs and severe learning difficulties, has also been forced to close early. 

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The school said it was “currently experiencing a high number of Covid related issues that have resulted in class closures and staff shortage”.

“The sad decision is that it is not possible to remain open to pupils for the final three days of school,” it added.

The John Grant School in Caister for children with special educational needs. Photo: Angela Sharpe.

The John Grant School in Caister for children with special educational needs has closed early for summer. - Credit: Archant © 2008

The closures come after a headteachers’ union urged parents to continue to send their children to school amid concerns some may keep them at home to avoid the risk that family holiday could be hit if they are forced to isolate.

Latest Department for Education figures show about 840,000 pupils in England were off for Covid-related reasons last week and a further 630,000 were absent for other reasons.

Other Norfolk schools that were closed to all pupils on Monday included Cromer Junior School, which was hit by staff shortages.

Hindringham CofE Primary School was closed due to two staff members having positive lateral flow tests and still waiting for PCR test results.

Wormegay CofE Primary School was unable to open due to staff shortages. 

Last week, the government announced it was ending the system of keeping pupils grouped in "bubbles" to limit the spread of Covid-19 and reduce the number of pupils being sent home to isolate.

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