IT has been interesting over the last few days and weeks reading the ongoing debate around schools reopening.

One theme is constantly coming back up - is it safe for teachers and pupils to return?

This is the most important issue in the whole debate. If teachers do not feel safe going back into schools, we should not force them to.

Already our teachers and lecturers have shown they can make remote learning work, carrying out hours of online lessons for their pupils. What difference does physically being in the classroom actually make besides being able to see and speak to people in person?

It is staggering too how politicians and pundits are trying to guilt teachers back into the classrooms, saying they should follow the example of NHS staff. This is nonsense. NHS staff can’t work from home, teachers can.

I suspect, cynical as I am, that the pundits and politicians turning on teachers are practising the age old tactic of divide and rule, as they did recently when attacking furloughed workers. If someone told you you had to return to work tomorrow, even though no one is sure it is safe, you would be well within your rights to tell that person where to go, so why expect teachers to just accept it?

As with most of what this government does, the communication on schools returning has been vague and muddled. We need clarity now more than ever.

Some schools, such as Worcestershire’s own Kempsey Primary School, have been refitting their facilities to make social distancing easier and to try and control the spread of coronavirus with a small number of children in classrooms.

This is fine when there are only a few people on-site, you can control where they go and where they are fairly simply, but what happens when you have hundreds of children?

I would argue the stress and strain of trying to get to grips with the new systems would be far more damaging to the pupils than the experience of learning from home.

Children do need a “normal” experience of learning, but sending them back to school and bombarding them with lots of strange new information about where they can go and how far apart to stand would be extremely difficult for young children to understand.