While unions were fighting to keep children and teachers safe, Labour leader admits private promise of support to Tory PM. But the reality in schools is exposed as nothing like Tory paid propaganda
In a scene during today’s PMQs that should be astonishing, Labour leader Kier Starmer went on record to agree with Boris Johnson that ‘schools are safe’ – in spite of rising infection rates and the acknowledgment that the return to the classroom will drive up the ‘R rate‘ of coronavirus spread.
But Starmer went further, stating that he had sent Johnson a letter “in confidence and in private” to promise Johnson his support in getting children back to school – and that “the only reason they weren’t back before the summer was because of [Johnson’s] incompetent Education Secretary”. But footage released today shows that the Tories’ ‘COVID-secure’ claims are nothing but propaganda:
Scottish and Northern Irish schools, which went reconvened 2-3 weeks earlier than England’s, have already seen a rapidly spiralling number of schools hit by coronavirus outbreaks, with hundreds of children and teachers infected and tens of thousands in isolation.
But Starmer would have liked English schools back earlier still – and made a secret promise to Johnson to help him achieve it, even as unions fought to protect their members and the public.
Starmer’s televised admission suggests he doesn’t even recognise why a secret letter of support to a Tory PM who has refused even to express regret for causing tens of thousands of needless deaths might be a problem.
Where is the Opposition fighting for the lives and safety of children, their teachers and their often-vulnerable families?
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