A senior Conservative MP has warned the government against “backsliding” on the reopening of all schools in England on 8 March and suggested some younger children should return to classrooms this month. Robert Halfon, the chair of the House of Commons education committee, told Sky News of his concerns of an “epidemic of educational poverty”
Ministers will tomorrow discuss a Cabinet Office proposal to introduce vaccine and testing certificates for when international travel is allowed again, Sky News can reveal. Responsibilities have already been divided up between government departments to look at the idea. If approved, the Department for Transport will be told to draw up plans for a certificate
Health Secretary Matt Hancock has told Sky News the government is “doing everything we can” to allow Britons to enjoy a holiday this year – amid confusion about whether people should be booking summer breaks. Following the introduction of tougher border measures for UK nationals returning from abroad and the continuing lockdown restrictions, the government
The prime minister has raised the prospect of people getting a coronavirus vaccine “booster” jab in the autumn. Boris Johnson said the move would likely be required as the UK battles the emergence of new variants of COVID-19. Live COVID updates from the UK and around the world “I think we’re going to have to
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has defended the introduction of 10-year jail sentences for those who lie about their travel at the UK border as “appropriate”. Under new measures due to come into force from Monday, UK and Irish residents arriving in England from 33 “red list” countries will have to pay up to £1,750 to
UK and Irish residents returning from 33 “red list” countries will have to pay £1,750 to quarantine in hotels for 10 days, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has told MPs. As part of a new quarantine system due to come into force from Monday next week, the government has booked 4,600 rooms across 16 hotels for
All travellers arriving in the UK are to face mandatory coronavirus tests from next week, Health Secretary Matt Hancock is poised to announce to MPs. In a Commons statement, he will say that from next Monday, 15 February, all passengers arriving in the UK will be required take a test on days two and eight
Boris Johnson has not ruled out a shake-up of the school calendar as part of a “flat out” bid to help pupils catch up from missed classroom time. The prime minister on Monday said the government’s “single biggest priority” now was to overcome the loss of learning suffered by children during the coronavirus pandemic. In
Labour has told the government to “crack down on the cronyism” as it claims almost £2bn in COVID contracts have gone to “friends and donors” of the Conservative Party. The Labour Party’s analysis of government procurement data during the coronavirus crisis found that more than £1.9bn in government contracts has been directly awarded to companies
The government is “very concerned” about low uptake of the coronavirus jab among black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities, the vaccines minister has told Sky News. Speaking to Sophy Ridge on Sunday, Nadhim Zahawi said overall COVID-19 vaccine acceptance was “very high”, with data from the Office for National Statistics showing 85% of adults
Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon faces new questions over whether her government misled the country’s highest court over the Alex Salmond affair. It centres on the date she first learned of complaints of sexual harassment against Mr Salmond, her predecessor. Ms Sturgeon gave the Scottish Parliament a date of 2 April 2018. That has already
Details of a huge overhaul of how the NHS is run have been revealed in a leaked government document. The reforms would reverse controversial changes brought in by David Cameron’s coalition government in 2012 and slim down the role of private providers in the health service. The policy document, leaked to the website Health Policy
Boris Johnson says it is still too early to talk about ending coronavirus restrictions, with news reports suggesting pubs might be able to reopen by May. Downing Street has confirmed that it aims to vaccinate those aged over 50 and those aged 16 to 65 who have certain health conditions by May. And some MPs
The government has revealed it wants all over-50s to be reached in the coronavirus vaccine rollout by May. It is a significant target and the first time a firm date has been put on when all those in the top nine categories on the priority list for a COVID-19 jab will be offered one by.
A minister has blamed hotel quarantine not coming into force for another 10 days in England on needing more “time to prepare”, after Labour branded the delay “beyond comprehension”. James Cleverly told Sky News that “hindsight is a wonderful thing”, as he faced questions about why the policy was announced on 27 January but will
Legislation will be introduced to change the “clearly outdated” rules and allow the attorney general to take maternity leave. Suella Braverman announced in November that she was expecting her second child early this year – and she is believed to be the most senior woman at cabinet level to have a baby while in office.