THE last few days across our district has seen the return to school of thousands of pupils aged five-18

As a Loughton parish and district councillor, and part-time teacher, I would like to express my thanks to all those school staff who have worked hard to make this possible.

Site staff, canteen staff, cleaning staff, admin staff, school leadership teams and teachers across our district have pulled out all the stops to ensure this safe and smooth return to our local schools.

For schools that I have detailed knowledge of here in Loughton, this safe return has involved an immense amount of planning affecting the school day, the school site, the school curriculum, and I am sure that this will have been the same for schools across our district.

Some of our local secondary schools have 1,400 teenagers and more than 100 staff and making them Covid secure was never going to be an easy task.

So I say, well done to all involved.

It is also important to acknowledge the immense amount of support and guidance parents and guardians have given to their children’s education since March and their key role in preparing their children for the last few days.

Here’s to a successful academic year for all our pupils, teachers and schools across the Epping Forest area.

Stephen Murray

Loughton Roding Ward

Independent District and Town Councillor

Avondale Drive, Loughton