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Schools

A safe and responsible return to nursery or school in Tower Hamlets

Many nurseries and schools in Tower Hamlets will begin to open for more pupils, or reopen, from the beginning of June. Like parents, we want to see local children back in a safe learning environment so that they can catch up on learning and not fall behind.

A decision about whether a nursery or school will increase pupil numbers is made by the relevant headteacher and governing body – they will only increase pupil numbers, or reopen their school, where it is felt that this can be managed safely.

As a local authority, we are supporting all of our nurseries and schools to understand and manage the risk of infection and we have worked closely with partners to develop options for a safe and responsible return to nurseries and schools.

The decision to send your child to school remains yours, and we recommend that you do send your child to school where you feel able to. It is the best place for them, to learn and to socialise.  

From 1 June, some schools will begin to offer places for:

  • Nursery
  • Reception
  • Year 1 and 6
  • Face-to-face support for Year 10 and 12 pupils

Your school should contact you to tell you about their plans but, where necessary, you should contact your child’s school directly for further information.

Alternatively, you can call our Family Information Service on 020 7364 6495 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm). If you have specific medical questions about sending your child to school you should contact your GP (eg someone in your house is shielding).

Since 23 March many of our schools have actually stayed open, and remain open, for vulnerable children and the children or key workers. We’ve also run hub schools, which have taken children from multiple schools under one roof; holiday childcare schemes for up to forty children at once, and; operated Phoenix Special School for approximately fifty pupils a day. In all of these education settings, we have experienced no cases of coronavirus infection, and we will extend the careful approach taken here to the phased reopening of all schools in our borough.

Our schools cannot eliminate the risk of infection entirely, but we are adopting sensible measures to manage and the reduce the risk. The first defence against infection remains self-isolation. If your child, or someone in your household, has coronavirus or symptoms of coronavirus - do not send your child to school. If a child, or member of staff, becomes ill whilst at school then they will be isolated and sent home.


For further information read the relevant government guidance on Education and childcare during COVID-19.

Is my school open?

Your school should contact you to tell you about their plans but, where necessary, you should contact your child’s school directly for further information.

Alternatively, you can call our Family Information Service on 020 7364 6495 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm).

If you have specific medical questions about sending your child to school you should contact your GP (eg someone in your house is shielding).

What else is available?

Holiday childcare scheme for key workers

Booking opens 12noon, Monday 6 July and close 1pm, Tuesday 21 July

Our Summer scheme will run from Monday 27 July to Friday 20 August and take place at St Matthias Primary School, Bacon Street E2 6DR.

Eligibility criteria will be updated on our website nearer the time.

Please register in advance to improve the booking process and receive e-mail updates.

For more information visit: www.towerhamlets.gov.uk/HCS

Children's Centres

Five of our Children's Centres remain open so families can meet a health visitor and midwife in one-to-one appointments for essential clinical advice and support.

  • Chrisp Street Children’s Centre, 23-27 Market Way, Poplar, London E14 6AH

  • Isle of Dogs Children's Centre, Stebondale St, Isle of Dogs, London E14 3BX

  • John Smith Children’s Centre, 90 Stepney Way, Whitechapel, London E1 2EN

  • Meath Gardens Children's Centre,1 Smart St, Bethnal Green, London E2 0SN

  • Overland Children’s Centre, 60 Parnell Rd, Bow, London E3 2RU

You must book ahead by calling 020 7364 5277 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm). More information can be found here.