Boris Johnson has said some coronavirus lockdown restrictions could be eased in the next few weeks.
The prime minister said this morning that the Government is ‘looking at the potential of relaxing some measures’ before mid-February.
However, the prime minister would not give a guarantee that schools would be back before Easter.
Speaking during a visit to a vaccination site at Barnet Football Club in north London, Mr Johnson said: “I do think now this massive achievement has been made of rolling out this vaccination programme, I think people want to see us making sure we don’t throw that away by having a premature relaxation and then another big surge of infection.
“I totally understand the frustrations of parents, I really thank teachers for what they’re doing, the immense efforts they’re going to to teach kids online, and the government has provided a lot of laptops… I know that’s no substitute for direct face-to-face learning.
“Believe me there’s nothing I want to do more than reopen schools, I’ve fought to keep schools open for as long as I possibly could.
“We want to see schools back as fast as possible, we want to do that in a way that is consistent with fighting the epidemic and keeping the infection rate down.”