Staff shortages force Wakefield secondary school to close to certain students

A Wakefield secondary school has been forced to close to students in two years groups after teaching staff were advised to enter self-isolation.

Tuesday, 17th March 2020, 2:26 pm
Updated Tuesday, 17th March 2020, 4:54 pm

St Thomas à Becket Catholic Secondary School, in Sandal, said it had been forced to make the decision following a change in government advice.

Coronavirus in Wakefield: Live updates as first cases of Covid-19 are confirmed in the districtUnder new guidance, anyone living with a person showing signs of coronavirus must self-isolate for 7 days.

As a result of this, year 9 and 10 students have been advised that they should not attend school from tomorrow (Wednesday, March 18, 2020).

A Wakefield secondary school has been forced to close to students in two years groups after teaching staff were advised to enter self-isolation.

All other year groups are expected to attend school as normal, though parents were reminded that anyone presenting with a dry cough or high temperature should be kept home for 14 days.

Catherine Baxendale, the school's headteacher, said: "Following the recent government guidance given in the press conference last night, I can confirm that whilst the School remains open for our older and younger students, we will need to implement a partial closure for two year groups due to the availability of teaching staff.

"Given current guidance a proportion of teaching staff are affected and fall within the categories for self-isolation.

"From Wednesday 18th March 2020, year 9 and year 10 pupils should not attend School.

"Whilst I appreciate that this decision may present an inconvenience for some families, I am unable to provide sufficient staffing levels to support full supervision of pupils across all year groups. I will continue to update parents across the course of the week as to any further partial closures that may be required.

"All other pupils and students should continue to attend School as normal and report to their form as normal at 8.35am.

"Finally, a reminder that any pupil presenting with a dry cough and/or a high temperature should be kept at home for 14 days."

View the full list of school closures here.