England makes face masks compulsory in schools
PIC: AFP

The UK government has made face coverings compulsory for staff and pupils aged 12 and over in secondary schools of England in areas subject to local lockdowns to control the spread of coronavirus.

In a U-turn after mandatory face masks had been ruled out, the Department for Education said that as schools in England prepare to reopen for the new term in the coming weeks, it is updating its advice on face coverings in schools in line with the World Health Organisation (WHO) guidance on face masks.

WHO now advises that "children aged 12 and over should wear a mask under the same conditions as adults, in particular when they cannot guarantee at least a one-metre distance from others and there is widespread transmission in the area." As a result, the British government said on Tuesday that it is revising its guidance on face coverings for staff and children in Year 7 or above in England.

Meanwhile, Teachers have warned Boris Johnson his face masks U-turn risks creating chaos in schools amid fears pupils will bully each other over their choice of covering, according to Daily Mail.

Teachers have cited fears of increased bullying, of pupils wearing dirty reused masks and of it being harder to challenge bad behaviour in corridors because it may be unclear which children are

responsible.

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