School closures: Huge blunder in new Tier 4 laws could see pupils forced to stay at home | UK | News (Reports)

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A Twitter user messaged human rights barrister Adam Wagner to state that the government’s Tier 4 rules have schools missing from exceptions.

“They wrote: “@AdamWagner1 Someone eagle eyed has spotted that Tier 4 has education at schools missing from exceptions.

“Tier 4 – Part 2 – 6 (3) is missing the (b) from Tier 3 which is (b)educational activities of a school.”

“Is this right?! T4 can’t go to school?”

Another person wrote: “Looks like inadvertence given Para 6(3)(b), (c), (e), (f).

“But obviously needs correcting!!”

Mr Wagner replied: “I agree it looks like an obvious error as other education permitted.

“But effect of the error is, currently, schools could not open in Tier 4 for general education as gatherings for purpose of that education aren’t an explicit exception.

“The gatherings exceptions are exhaustive.

“I imagine that we will see this error corrected well before schools can go back.

“But it demonstrates the dangers of legislation at speed when policy is decided at the very last minute possible.

“Just to get some perspective here, a law was drafted, in the middle of the night without any Parliamentary debate or scrutiny, published the minute it came into force and it accidentally banned schooling of children.”

Earlier on Wednesday,a senior Government advisor said tougher new coronavirus restrictions are expected to “flatten the curve” with infection rates but hinted further measures may be needed in January.

Professor Neil Ferguson, a member of the Government’s New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats advisory group (NervTag), warned the new strain of the virus which has quickly infected huge numbers of people is “everywhere now”.

He told the committee on Wednesday: “Schools are now shut, we are in a near-lockdown situation across the country, contact rates are lower over Christmas.

“I expect, though I hesitate to make any sort of predictions, we will see a flattening of the curve in the next two weeks.

“We will see at least a slowing of growth.”

Professor Ferguson added: “Exactly what we will see is almost impossible to predict.

“If we start to see a significant decline over the next two weeks in case numbers overall and case numbers of this variant, I would not say we were in a great position … but it offers a little more optimism that maybe we can keep on top of this.

“If we see case numbers increase, which is not my expectation, we will be in a very difficult position.”

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