Cautious approach from schools in the east as students heading back classroom

Watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Elodie Harper.

As children across the region return to the classroom, and covid restrictions are being eased, one of the region's headteachers said cautious optimism is needed.

Rules around mixing and social distancing have been relaxed, with bubbles no longer recommended, and face coverings are no longer being advised but could be requested if cases start to

But pupils are being encouraged to take regular lateral flow tests to help stop covid cases from spreading.

Many pupils like these at Castle Manor Academy in Haverhill have already taken lateral flow tests before returning to the classroom, to try and limit asymptomatic infections. Anyone who tests positive will be asked to self-isolate.

Samuel Whitbread Academy in Shefford year eleven students at the school are also expected to be the first to sit GCSE exams for two years.

The school is hoping that they will go ahead without Covid cases spiking.

A memorial garden will also be built for those from the school community who died from Covid.

The vice-principal says if there is an outbreak at the school, they have contingency measures

Bubble closures, which saw thousands of students sent home, caused much misery last term, but it will be some time before we learn if the current measures are enough to control infection.