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‘Majority of children happy to go back to school’

Amanda Spielman, Ofsted chief inspector, has said children are “adaptable and flexible” around things like mask-wearing and testing in schools, and “can live with a little bit of inconvenience for a few weeks”.

She told Sophy Ridge on Sky News: “I think the overwhelming thing we’re seeing is the vast majority of parents, the vast majority of children and the vast majority of teachers are really happy to be going back to school.

“I really hope the whole paraphernalia of masks and testing is only necessary for a short time … I love the idea of children being able to come back in summer term able to see everybody fully.”

She said current Ofsted monitoring visits have shown “the extraordinary efforts that schools have been putting into remote education”.

She added: “It’s been a slog, it’s been a real slog. Children on the receiving end are bored, lonely, miserable, anxious and really, really want the normal experience again.”