Eltham Church Of England Main College was resulting from shut on Monday (Steve Finn)
Schooling Secretary Gavin Williamson has threatened Greenwich Council with authorized motion if it closes faculties down early earlier than the Christmas holidays.
Colleges within the south-east London borough had been advised to modify to distant studying for many pupils from Monday night in a letter from council chief Danny Thorpe.
Council leaders in Waltham Forest and Islington additionally suggested faculties to maneuver to on-line studying for the previous couple of days of time period resulting from rising Covid charges within the capital.
Quite a lot of faculties in Basildon have additionally already moved to distant studying with the blessing of the Tory-run Essex County Council.
However on Monday night, Williamson issued a short lived continuity course to the London Borough of Greenwich demanding it withdraw letters to move lecturers and oldsters which suggested faculties to shut.
The course states it’s enforceable by Williamson making an software to the Excessive Courtroom or the county court docket for an injunction if the council doesn’t comply.
The Schooling Secretary mentioned in an announcement: ‘It’s merely not in youngsters’s finest pursuits for faculties in Greenwich, Islington or elsewhere to shut their doorways.’
He added: ‘I’ve at all times been clear that utilizing authorized powers is a final resort however continuity of training is a nationwide precedence.
‘That’s why I received’t hesitate to do what is true for younger individuals and have issued a course to Greenwich Council setting out that they have to withdraw the letter issued to headteachers on Sunday.
‘The Regional Colleges Commissioner will proceed to work intently with Greenwich Council and faculties within the borough, as we’ve performed with faculties throughout the nation, to assist them with any operational challenges they face and guarantee youngsters can proceed to obtain face-to-face training.’
Colleges in Greenwich have been requested to shut after Monday (Getty Pictures)
Thorpe mentioned the council was in search of authorized recommendation and would reply to Williamson on Tuesday morning.
‘Colleges throughout the borough have now organised on-line studying from tomorrow, while others are opening their premises to all pupils,’ he added.
‘We have now alerted faculties, and can converse to them tomorrow. However given we obtained this notification simply earlier than 5pm, it was unimaginable to ask faculties to alter any of the preparations they’ve in place for Tuesday.’
Thorpe’s order to shut faculties got here as Well being Secretary Matt Hancock introduced London and elements of Hertfordshire and Essex will probably be plunged into the best degree of coronavirus restrictions on Wednesday.
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