Schools in Cheshire East have seen levels of attendance significantly higher than the England average, following the long Covid lockdown.
Early figures from the Department for Education show that, of the 113 Cheshire East schools that submitted a data return on Thursday. 3rd September, 100 were fully open – an open rate of 88.5 per cent - the national average being 71.5 per cent for that day.
Attendance at these schools was 79.5 per cent, with the national average being 62.5 per cent. Where schools were fully open, the attendance rate was more than 92.9 per cent.
Councillor Kathryn Flavell, cabinet member for children and families, said: "I would like to thank Cheshire East's pupils, parents, teachers and the many other staff who have made such a positive start 'Back to School'.
"It is early days yet, but initial indications are that the preparations that our schools have made, supported by the council, have put us in the best possible position to welcome children back, to continue their essential classroom-based education.
"I firmly believe that for most children, school is the best place for them to learn. While tremendous efforts were made during lockdown to provide remote learning opportunities, for many this was no replacement for classroom working.
"We know that the lockdown and return to school has been a difficult and anxious time for some and we are offering a range of support to those who need help.
"We continue to work hard with our schools, colleges, early years and transport providers to make these first few days back into school as easy, safe and happy as possible for all Cheshire East pupils."
Photo: Children returning to St Benedict's Catholic Primary School in Handforth where Headteacher Hannah McGuire said "I don't know who is most excited; the staff, the parents or the children!"