28/07/2009 11:23 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Swine Flu: Schools May Stay Shut To Stop It Spreading

This week, schools in England close for the summer holidays, following Irish and Scottish schools who shut their doors a few weeks ago. But parents are now asking whether the rumours are true that in an attempt to stop the spread of Swine Flu, schools may not be opening up again for the new term in September.

A report in The Guardian claims that the government is being urged by medical experts to keep schools shut. The hope is that this might slow down the epidemic.

Researchers from Imperial College London, in a study published in medical journal The Lancet predicted that prolonged closures could reduce the scale of the outbreak by 13-17.

When the outbreak first started in May, around 100 schools shut, but then re-opened as official advice urged them to do so. Swine Flu was becoming so prevalent that these closures became impractical.

And it's spread so much more since then - if you haven't been ill yourself, I'm sure you know of someone who has.

Schools Secretary Ed Balls is refusing to commit to anything at this stage, and says he plans to review the situation and make a decision in late August.

As parents we understand that this is a challenging situation with no easy solution, but the question remains unanswered: if our children won't be going to school, where will they go? Will we see the start of a nationwide programme of home schooling?