Calls for exams to be cancelled NOW as Boris Johnson 'prepares to close schools'

The Government is facing calls to cancel GCSE and A-Level exams as Boris Johnson looks set to shut schools indefinitely under a third national lockdown.

The Prime Minister will set out the 'next steps' in the Government's Covid-19 response with an address to the nation tonight at 8pm, with Parliament being recalled on Wednesday. 

MailOnline understands England is heading for a new set of blanket restrictions similar to those imposed during the first lockdown last spring.

Both primary and secondary schools will likely close under the new rules - which are set to last until the most-vulnerable Britons are vaccinated - prompting concerns about this summer's exams.

In the first national lockdown, exams were cancelled forcing GCSEs and A-Level grades to be determined by teacher assessments.

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Now, headteachers are urging the Government to call off the tests again because 'wider public health, pupil and staff safety should be prioritised ahead of examinations.'

Boris Johnson is widely expected to announce that schools across England will remain closed in the coming weeks as part of a new national lockdown

Boris Johnson is widely expected to announce that schools across England will remain closed in the coming weeks as part of a new national lockdown

Head teachers are calling on the Government to scrap this summer's GCSE and A-level exams

Head teachers are calling on the Government to scrap this summer's GCSE and A-level exams

Furious students and parents are also claiming it is simply 'not fair' to make teenagers sit exams when in-person contact hours are non-existent. 

Mr Johnson yesterday refused to rule out cancelling exams.

When probed on the topic by the BBC's Andrew Marr, Mr Johnson said: 'We've got to be realistic about the pace at which this new variant has spread.

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'We've got to be realistic about the impact it's having on our NHS and we've got to be humble in the face of this virus.' 

This week, a spokesperson from the WorthLess? campaign group - a collection of 2,000 head teachers in 80 local authorities -  told The Sunday Times: 'Wider public health, pupil and staff safety should be prioritised ahead of examinations.

Furious Britons took to Twitter to call on the Government to call off exams for this summer due to a lack of contact time

Furious Britons took to Twitter to call on the Government to call off exams for this summer due to a lack of contact time

But not everyone agreed that cancelling exams was the best way forward, with Science teacher Dr Ella Swamp writing: 'Cancelling exams is pretty much the same as cancelling all learning for year 11 and 13'

But not everyone agreed that cancelling exams was the best way forward, with Science teacher Dr Ella Swamp writing: 'Cancelling exams is pretty much the same as cancelling all learning for year 11 and 13'

'Public safety should not be risked or driven by an inflexible pursuit of GCSE and A-levels.' 

And today, it was revealed that England is set to is facing blanket lockdown restrictions involving the mass-closure of schools.

As it stands, most primaries in England are open for in-person teaching, while secondary schools will reopen on a staggered basis later this month with plans to test every student weekly.  

Furious Britons took to Twitter to call on the Government to call off exams for this summer due to a lack of contact time.

Last year, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson faced calls to resign after thousands of A-Level students missed out on university places due to a highly-criticised algorithm.

The area in red is where the Government ordered all schools to shut. The areas in pink are where headteachers have shut down anyway

The area in red is where the Government ordered all schools to shut. The areas in pink are where headteachers have shut down anyway 

Naomi Carpenter, a 20-year-old sports rehab student at Hull University, takes a swab for a lateral flow Covid-19 test at the campus sports facilities as students return to the university

Naomi Carpenter, a 20-year-old sports rehab student at Hull University, takes a swab for a lateral flow Covid-19 test at the campus sports facilities as students return to the university

Schoolchildren make their way to primary school in Leeds

A parent hugs her daughter outside Manor Park School and Nursery in Knutsford, Cheshire,

Schoolchildren make their way to primary school in Leeds (left) and Cheshire (right) - but millions of children are now at home for at least a fortnight

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