Child mental health experts have urged the government to prioritise children’s play and socialising with friends over formal lessons and academic progress when schools in England reopen and lockdown restrictions are eased.
They say they are “extremely concerned” about the impact of the lockdown and more than six weeks without face-to-face play with peers on child mental health. They are calling on ministers to ensure that play is at the top of newly permitted activities.
They are also calling for children to be allowed to play with their peers without social distancing as soon as it is safe to do so, based on a “risk-benefit approach”, recognising the benefits while ensuring children are not exposed to unnecessary risk.
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