Boris Johnson has warned that a second wave of the coronavirus hitting the country is “inevitable” but said he wanted to keep schools open.
The prime minister said the last thing anybody wanted was a second national lockdown but his government was considering whether it needed to “go further” than the current national restrictions put in place earlier this week.
When asked about the possibility of a two-week October half-term in order to bring in a short lockdown, Mr Johnson said: “What I can certainly say about parents and schools is we want to keep the schools open – that is going to happen.
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“We want to try and keep all parts of the economy open as far as we possibly can – I don’t think anybody wants to go into a second lockdown but clearly when you look at what is happening, you have got to wonder whether we need to go further than the ‘rule of six’ that we have brought in on Monday, so we will be looking at the local lockdowns we have got in large parts of the country now, looking at what we can do to intensify things that help bring the rate of infection down there, but also looking at other measures as well,” said Mr Johnson.
Coronavirus: Keeping schools open
Commenting on the spread of the virus, the prime minister added: “Obviously, we’re looking very carefully at the spread of the pandemic as it evolves over the last few days and there’s no question, as I’ve said for several weeks now, that we could expect (and) are now seeing a second wave coming in.
“We are seeing it in France, in Spain, across Europe – it has been absolutely, I’m afraid, inevitable we were going to see it in this country.”
A nationwide lockdown in October during the half-term break has been proposed as a way to contain a second wave of rapidly spreading coronavirus infection, according to reports.
Scientists from the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) have reportedly proposed a two-week national lockdown in October to tackle the rising number of Covid-19 cases.
The Financial Times reported that the scientists had said a lockdown could coincide with the October school half-term.