Harlow’s MP says the practice of sending whole student bubbles home from school when somebody gets Covid-19 needs to end.

In an interview with ITV Robert Halfon, also chair of the Education Select Committee, claimed pictures of full crowds at Wimbledon ‘seemed astonishing’ considering school bubbles will be sent home in entirety if when member is infected with coronavirus.

Robert Halfon further called for the Prime Minister to set out a long-term plan for education to help children catch-up on missed classroom hours over the course of the pandemic.

Speaking on Sky News he called for the Government to make education a priority.

“We are damaging the life chances of these children to climb the education ladder of opportunity,” he said.

“They are behind in reading, behind in mathematics, behind in many subjects, and their mental health and safeguarding are suffering as well and that is despite the efforts of remarkable support staff and teachers trying to do their best.

“We need to keep children in school. Its not just children being sent home because of Covid. We now know, from the centre of social justice, there are close to 100,000 what I call ‘ghosted children’ who are lost to the system who haven’t even returned to school, there is no proper records for who these children are.”

When challenge on why education was not higher on the Government’s agenda, Mr Halfon called for the Prime Minister to create a covid-recovery plan with the same urgency as had been given to the NHS and Defence Department.

Mr Halfon added: “The Government have, to be fair, spent an extra £3 billion on catch-up tuition. But what I would like to see is a serious long-term education plan from the Prime Minister, not just setting out how children are going to recover from the pandemic, but also looking at social injustices in education.

“We’ve got to stop sending children home, it’s a disaster and you cannot underestimate the damages we are doing to our children every day they are not in school.”