56 primary schools told by London council that pupils as young as 4 must wear masks against Government advice

Children as young as four at dozens of primary schools in East London will have to wear Covid face masks all day.

Redbridge Council has written to all 56 primaries under its control advising that face coverings should be worn by kids when they return on March 8.

Children from Reception up to Year Six have been told to wear the masks "in all areas of the school" and are only allowed to take them off while eating.

This is despite the Department for Education saying that primary kids do not need to wear coverings as the risk of them developing severe Covid symptoms is extremely low.

Redbridge is the first council to instruct all its primaries to introduce mandatory mask wearing, reports The Telegraph.

In January, the council wrote to school bosses urging them to adopt the policy “given the increased transmissibility of the new Covid variants”.

But, at the time, only vulnerable children and those with key worker parents were attending schools.

KIDS NEED TO COVER UP

Jas Athwal, of Redbridge Council, on Monday said the advice to primaries remains unchanged.

He said: “We have provided comprehensive advice to our schools. In some cases, where we have gone beyond the DfE advice, we have used the advice from Independent Sage.

“We have advised primary schools to encourage the use of face coverings indoors, as per the Independent Sage advice that pupils at both primary and secondary should be encouraged to wear a face covering indoors as one of a range of health and safety measures.”

A Department for Education spokesperson said: “Children in primary schools should not be asked to wear face coverings when they return to school from March 8.

“Our guidance is clear, face coverings are only necessary for pupils in Year 7 and above and we are in contact with the council on the matter.”

This is not the first time Redbridge has went against government advice.

In December, with the area suffering some of England's worst Covid rates, the councilbacked schools to close early for the festive holidays in a snub to Number 10's guidance at the time.

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