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Petition link to close schools

263 replies

Awkward1 · 06/03/2020 22:20

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DressingGownofDoom · 07/03/2020 00:49

Bugger that, kids don't get it as bad as us oldies. Keep schools open, close the workplaces. Hazmat suits and massive pay rises for teachers and hospital staff.


KisforKoala · 07/03/2020 00:55

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IntergalacticSuperstar · 07/03/2020 01:12

Terrible idea.


SD1978 · 07/03/2020 01:15

And who looks after the kids? Parents just take a few weeks/months off? You're happy when emergency services effectively stop, as do most shop staff? Why only schools? Why not all workplaces? Sorry- but this is a ridiculous idea


DarkMutterings · 07/03/2020 01:18

I mentioned on a previous thread I'm in Hong Kong where the schools are closed.

It doesn't happen in isolation, they don't just shut the schools and expect normal life to continue. Offices shut or enforce compulsory WFH, council offices, courts, and post offices all shut, factories shut, shops and restaurants shut, sports facilities shut.

On one hand if you can't do your job it's ok because the chances are your clients can't do theirs either so everything grinds to a halt, and on the other it's a massive massive impact on the economy and has knock on impact like people can't pay rents, some landlords are offering discounts or rent breaks to help out (of course others aren't either because they can't afford to or don't want to), or banks offer payment holidays on mortgages or loans. It really touches every single part of society. So it doesn't happen lightly.


compulsiveliar2019 · 07/03/2020 01:39

Ffs it's getting ridiculous now! How exactly is shutting everything down going to help. Screwing the economy up is not the way to solve this. Yes it could get nasty. Yes we should be taking reasonable precautions like washing your hands and perhaps avoiding crowded public spaces.
For the vast majority of people who get this virus it will be unpleasant but not dangerous. The people who are most at risk of serious complications should be the people being especially careful and perhaps some level of isolation might be sensible for them. And yes it sucks that people are going to die from this. That's terrible but sadly we can't save everyone from everything. I'm sorry to be blunt but we are all going to die of something at some point. Life will still have to go on for the rest of us and a screwed up economy won't help with that.


DarkMutterings · 07/03/2020 01:53

But that kind of comes to the core of it - is the government's job to make difficult decisions that will protect the more vulnerable members of society or is it to assume some people will suffer/die but the economy will be ok (subject to the risk of a global recession then whatever the UK does, is irrelevant)

Answers on a postcard to BoJo because that dilemma is probably blowing his mind at the moment ...


Janemarpling · 07/03/2020 06:54

The mathematical modelling shown on the news.

Social distance for four weeks reduced peak by 25 percent. 8 by 50 but longer made a second peak at the start of winter.

Maybe 4 weeks taking into account the 2 weeks Easter could be a compromise. I think 8 would push it though and that would be damaging.

The Swine flu graph dropped in the summer holidays and then peaked in September so that must have had impact but then I haven't looked at other variables.

I feel for those that would struggle with child care if ill.


larrygrylls · 07/03/2020 07:02

Petition? Ha! Ha! Ha!

During this outbreak, we will not be living in any kind of democracy. It will be troops on the street, maybe rationing etc.

Luckily it will be a benign dictatorship led by medical advice, but it will still feel pretty brutal.


nellodee · 07/03/2020 07:19

The govt are planning for up to 315,000 deaths, based on a CFR of 1%.
For comparison, 450,000 people in the UK died during World War 2.

If we run out of hospital space, the CFR will surpass 1%.
If we do nothing but wash our hands, it is very likely we will run out of hospital space.

So, we need to be thinking about making the same kind of level of sacrifice that people did during World War 2. We need to be prepared to make huge but temporary changes to our life. Think about the amount of people who were sent to work in munitions factories, or who sent their children to live in the country. We won't be asked to do those things, but we may be asked to make other, more relevant changes. We have to imagine that the government may take much, much more control over our lives than we are used to, or care for.

And here we are saying that we can't possibly manage if we shut schools for an additional 2 weeks. Talk about the Blitz Spirit, eh?


Soontobe60 · 07/03/2020 07:20

Trying to force school closures by having a petition is the height of arrogance.
Parents would also have to stay home, many only get statutory sick pay so their income would be decimated.
If schools closed, all people whose work was in education would lose pay. From cooks to school bus drivers to IT technicians.
How do you enforce isolation? Oh, I know, all the teachers could form vigilante groups!


nellodee · 07/03/2020 07:20

Cross post, larrygrylls, but pretty much saying the same thing, I think.


purplebob · 07/03/2020 07:22

Term holiday are coming up anyway, what's an extra 2 weeks off?

Bless your naivety.


Soontobe60 · 07/03/2020 07:23

For comparison, 450,000 people in the UK died during World War 2
But not of an infectious disease! Mainly from targeted bombing during the blitz. To make this comparison is just plain stupid.


OtherVoicesOtherRooms · 07/03/2020 07:25


I winder how king it will take for the DFail to liken it to the Black Death/Plague? One of the most devastating pandemics in human history. Maybe tomorrow's papers will bring this news.


OtherVoicesOtherRooms · 07/03/2020 07:26

'Wonder' and 'long' obviously!


MrHodgeymaheg · 07/03/2020 07:28

I think it's a bit premature. We need to look at the big picture. You do this too early and schools may be closed for ages as the virus continues to spread. The students doing major exams will have their education severely disrupted. Not all parents are comfortable with home schooling. Kids will inevitably end up out and interacting with other kids if the virus is not seen as that serious, so parents will just let them play out and interact and spread the virus anyway. If school is closed in isolated cases, or when the numbers are really significant and the deaths are much higher, isolation will probably mean isolation for a lot of people as the reality of what this virus is will hit home.

It will have a huge affect on the economy and services as both the frontline and emergency services support staff who have kids need to stay home, and what about the delivery drivers who will drop these so called emergency parcels off, refuse collectors etc. One sure fire way to spread disease is to have a shit ton or rubbish uncollected on our streets.

What about the parents who just get SSP and their kids get their only decent meal of the day at school? Like it or not school IS much needed childcare as well as an education for some people. We don't all have a husband or wife with a six figure salary or rich parents who allow us to be a SAHP.

I understand this situation is scary, and it does seem school closures are inevitable but the timing really needs to be right. I think in about two weeks it could be a reality, but for now it would be too damaging and will severely piss the nation off and send some families in to the red.

What we should be asking is why our society and economy so fragile in the first place that we can't cope with the closure of schools for a couple of weeks. Years ago this wouldn't have been an issue. Why is the economic impact on both families and seemingly stable businesses so catastrophic? They are all in debt and keep getting in more debt to stay afloat and the things that really matter in life are getting more expensive. If it weren't for that, we could have all shut everything down at the first whiff of the virus and it would probably be over now.


ElderAve · 07/03/2020 07:29

I'd say the opposite is necessary and I work school.

If this reaches proper crisis point, everything possible needs to be done to keep schools open, for the sake of the economy and the NHS.

School staff might have to accept (for once) that we are public servants and will need to do what the country needs of them in a time of national crisis.

No doubt some parents, who are able, will keep DC away and that's fine, but closing schools would be like closing hospitals or shops IMO.


Nicepud · 07/03/2020 07:33

I've signed but personally don't want blanket school closures.

I want them to consider letting parents who can take their dc out of school easily for a while (can wfh, sahp, younger dc with no exam pressure etc.) without fining them.

I consider that one of the sort of half-way measures that could help slow CV19 down, enough to lessen the pressure on schools/nhs staff.


nellodee · 07/03/2020 07:33

School closures reduce the growth of the virus not the numbers infected. That's why they should be closed early, when growth is at its highest and numbers are at their lowest. This both maximises its impact on the total amount of infections and minimises the impact on the NHS, since it is not yet anywhere near as overloaded as it soon will be.


larrygrylls · 07/03/2020 07:38


It is way more complex than that. Were schools to close, it takes at least one working parent out of the equation and many of these will be in the NHS, the Police, researchers etc.

We need a nuanced response relying on the best advice of real experts such as virologists and statisticians. This is one I would trust the government on.


MsJaneAusten · 07/03/2020 07:39

The petition says “We would like the government to at least consider closing schools/colleges down in the coming weeks or as soon as possible, in addition to taking necessary actions to prevent further spread”

I’m pretty sure the government have already said this could happen if appropriate and there are regular high level meetings about preparedness. What’s the point in the petition?


whatsthatonthedoorhandle · 07/03/2020 07:41

No need to panic. The little angels at the school I work in sanitised the school themselves smeared anti-bac hand gel on pretty much every door handle /surface in the school yesterday.
We all got a slimy handful every time we opened a door Angry


SabineSchmetterling · 07/03/2020 07:44

Our unwillingness to do things like close schools is the reason we’re now had far more cases than places like Hong Kong or Singapore. Closing schools works. It’s hugely inconvenient but it would massively reduce the spread of the disease. We should also be thinking about cancelling mass gatherings.
I’m not overly worried about Coronavirus myself. I’m not in a high risk group and I’ve been teaching as usual this week. I’m torn between hoping we stay open because I don’t want to lose GCSE and A Level teaching time, and being frustrated that the government doesn’t seem to be taking containment and/or delaying the speed of the disease at all seriously.


nellodee · 07/03/2020 07:45

I obviously realise that nurses have children. I am suggesting that if we are going to close schools for a limited period, the time to do it is before it seems vital. This is when we can best spare those nurses who absolutely cannot find other child care options. If we leave it later, we will lose at least the same amount of nurses to ill health then as we would have done to childcare now.

If we take measures at the right time (earlier, rather than later), it will seem as though we shouldn't have taken them at all, because they will be effective and the worst case will be averted, and all the people saying this is a fuss over nothing can say, "See? I told you so."

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