Grantham pupils enjoy new 'freedom and normality' as they return to school after covid restrictions lifted
Schools across Grantham welcomed pupils back this week for the first time since the majority of covid restrictions were lifted.
Measures to limit the spread of covid - such as masks and social distancing - have been lifted in England, but regular testing remains.
Further covid restrictions in schools, such as class and year group bubbles, have also been lifted and schools do not need to stagger start and finish time but some protective measures will remain in place.
The lifting of covid restrictions in schools is in line with the general removal of restrictions for England at Step 4.
Sheridan Edwards, executive headteacher of Denton Primary School and Harlaxton Primary, said that both staff and pupils are enjoying having more freedom around school.
She added: "We have had a very smooth start back in both schools. Children and staff have adjusted very well to the new routines and although stringent hygiene and hand washing regimes remain, both children and staff are enjoying more freedom with movement around the school.
"Some of our younger children have met some of the older children for the first time today and at Harlaxton, it is the first time some children have ever eaten in the school hall.
"Children and staff seem rested following the summer break and we are all ready for a new term; even the weather has welcomed us back."
Jess Leonard, principal at Walton Academy, said it was "back to business" following a challenging year as pupils returned to class after their Summer break yesterday (Monday).
She added: “It has been wonderful to welcome all of our students back on site after the summer break in a positive and safe manner. We have been really pleased with how quickly our community has got ‘back to business’ especially as for the past year things have been different and challenging for everyone.
"In line with the current schools operational guidance from the government we have updated our risk assessment and this has allowed us to bring back some more normality to site and this has certainly allowed a real buzz and sense of community at the start of this term.
“Throughout this time we have kept the wellbeing and safety of our community at the heart and this continues - we do still have mitigation in place in line with current guidance to keep everyone as safe as possible, and this includes increased ventilation, cleaning of frequently touched surfaces and continuing with our hand hygiene regime.
"We continue to be really proud of our whole community as once again at the start of this term there has been change and difference to deal with but everyone is supporting each other to ensure it continues to be a successful and positive experience for everyone. The levels of determination and commitment that are being shown by this generation are incredible."