COUNCILLORS have continued to up the pressure on the government to keep children away from schools tomorrow.

Yesterday Green Party Brighton and Hove City Council leader Phelim Mac Cafferty said he has written to the Education Secretary Gavin Williamson asking for the city to be included in contingency plans.

It follows the U-turn by Mr Williamson on Friday where he agreed that all primary schools in London would close.

Cllr Mac Cafferty has advised all primary schools in Brighton and Hove to prepare for home learning and to keep pupils at home.

Read more on this story: Council leader calls on Education Secretary to close primary schools as Covid-19 infections soar

Parents have reported receiving emails from headteachers telling them their children's schools will be closed tomorrow.

The Argus: Classrooms could once again be empty as pupils are told to learn at homeClassrooms could once again be empty as pupils are told to learn at home

Earlier yesterday the Labour Party group of councillors, the second largest party on the city council, called on the council to close schools.

Cllr John Allcock, who was chairman of the children, young people and skills committee send out a message on behalf of all Labour councillors.

The statement read: "In view of warnings from eminent scientists of an ‘imminent catastrophe’ unless the whole of the UK is locked down and given the significant rise in COVID infections caused by the new variant, we are extremely concerned about the increased risk to life and the unprecedented pressure on the NHS.


"In this context, we would urge the City’s Green Administration to advise primary schools not to open on January 4. 

"Schools should remain closed until a safer environment can be created and until the risks to children, families and staff can be effectively contained. 

"The closure should apply to all children, apart from children of key workers and those recognised as the most vulnerable.

The Argus: Cllr John AllcockCllr John Allcock

"A longer period of online working for all school and college students could help suppress virus levels and buy time both for the roll out of the vaccine and to put in place measures that can keep schools safer.

"We have 65 fantastic schools in Brighton and Hove and we are all very proud of the hard work their staff have put in during an extremely challenging and extended time.

"We realise how vital schools are for education, mental health and wellbeing, and safeguarding.

"However, the situation that we face is unparalleled, and the lives of children and staff and the wider community including parents, grandparents and carers remains our utmost priority."