Unions were furious at the removal of masks in classrooms yesterday night and accused Boris Johnson, of failing his ‘duty to care’ for teachers.

On Wednesday, the Prime Minister removed a variety of restrictions including work-from-home guidance elimination and the removal of Covid passes for large venues.

Students will be able to remove their face covers while at school starting today.

While the movement was welcomed in some parts as a significant step in normalizing life, others warned that too much lifting of curbs could cause even more chaos.

Joint general secretary Dr Mary Bousted said: ‘Schools and colleges are still feeling the impact of Covid-19. 

From today, it will also no longer be mandatory for pupils to wear face coverings while learning at school

Today, pupils will not be required to use face covers while at school.

The Prime Minister lifted a range of restrictions on Wednesday, including axing work from home guidance and removing the need for Covid passes at large venues next week

A range of restrictions were lifted by the Prime Minister on Wednesday. These included the removal of work-from-home guidance as well as the elimination or reduction in Covid passes required at large venues.

“The ONS’s latest infection survey updates show that 1 in 10 Primary Age pupils has Covid-19. 

“While there is a decline in secondary school age children, this is not a cause for concern. Schools have only been back for a short period of time since Christmas, so it is possible that this trend may continue. 

“Such uncertainty could result in a greater risk of disruption for children and staff, with them having to be isolated.

“We are worried to see the Covid-19-related absence when figures will be released next week. 

“The danger is that we remove restrictions too soon before the consequences of returning to school are obvious. 

“This will cause more disruption to education, which is very worrying especially for those pupils who are taking the national exams next year and whose education was already so severely disrupted.

The Government must not just make statements to save Boris Johnson’s job. It should instead exercise a duty of care towards the nation’s children and those who teach them. 

‘This disruption is at the door of the Government who should have got ventilation and filtration solutions in place before Omicron as advised by SAGE and they should be getting these solutions in place urgently now to ensure ​interruption of education remains at the minimum.’ 

Teachers warned students that it would take them more than 18 years to catch up, after they have fallen behind in their studies because of Covid.

A survey of 4610 teachers across England found that state school teachers had a higher likelihood to provide gloomy outlooks than those in private schools. This was according to Bett, a leading EdTech conference.

Study showed that 14% of private secondary school teachers and 23% in private schools did not see pupils fall behind because of closures, Covid-related absences, or other factors.

It comes after teachers also warned that pupils will take more than 18 months to catch up after falling behind on their studies due to Covid

After teachers had warned students that Covid would make it more difficult for them to catch up, they were also alarmed. 

Private secondary school teachers believed their pupils would catch-up in six months. Only 3 percent of state school teachers believed that pupils were behind, whereas 19% in private schools thought so.

Partly, this could be due to private schools adapting quicker to online learning by giving students laptops. 

36% of teachers working in primary schools believed that it would take pupils 18 months to catch up. Only 22% of teachers at secondary state schools agreed.

The overall outlook of classroom teachers was slightly less pessimistic that those working as headteachers and members of senior leadership teams (SLT).

32% of coalface teachers thought that it would take at least 18 months, as opposed to 31% of those who did SLT or 28% of the heads.

Analyzing by subject, the language teachers and Key Stage 2 primary teachers were most pessimistic. 34% believed it would take longer than 18 months. 

It also emerged that nearly four in ten – 38 per cent – of teachers agree or strongly agree with banning school closures and classing them as ‘essential infrastructure’.

Rob Halfon (a Tory senior MP and chairman of the education select panel), proposes the move. He wants school closings to be prohibited unless they’re voted in parliament.  

Eve Harper (director of Bett), who ordered the study, said, ‘Our survey clearly shows that teachers are concerned about the fact that the learning gap is growing since the pandemic. Teachers are more concerned that Covid will not catch up in 18 months.

The time it may take state school teachers for students to regain lost learning is quite different from private school teachers.

“Education Technology has played a pivotal role in remote learning. However, it’s clear that educators have a lot to do. Teachers must feel valued and supported.