Secondary school pupils in England returned from the Christmas break this week to new advice – to wear face coverings in lessons and to take lateral flow tests at school before heading into classrooms.

These are recommendations and are not mandatory. There are no statistics yet that show how many pupils have been complying, but some parents and pupils have expressed concern that a number are choosing not to.

Some charities say they are worried about the effects on vulnerable students of this advice being ignored, but some parents say masks are causing problems for children's learning.

The government says schools "can decide how best to encourage" pupils to take tests and wear masks.

The Department for Education (DfE) stressed that pupils should not be "denied education" on the basis of whether or not they wear a mask.

It has previously said it is determined to keep schools open, despite more staff absences being expected.

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