Great Britain

Family fury as two ‘inspirational and selfless’ teachers, 42 and 65, killed by Covid

THE furious families of two teachers killed by Covid-19 are calling for educators to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

Donna Coleman, 42, went back to teaching at Burnley College when schools reopened, despite telling her sister she didn't feel safe.

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Her sister Vicki, 45, is calling for teachers to get the Covid-19 jab.

She told The Mirror: "We need teachers to be vaccinated as soon as possible.

"Donna told me in September that she was scared.

"Don’t get me wrong, she wanted to go back - she loved her job - but she said staff members were terrified."

Donna had no underlying health conditions.

She was rushed to Blackburn Royal Hospital on December 29 with breathing problems.

The devoted educator promised to FaceTime Vicki on January 2, but never did.

Donna was already on a ventilator and her sister said their dad went to visit her and said "she’s not coming out of this".


The next day Vicki held Donna's hand and said goodbye.

In Aprl 2020, well-loved FE teacher in Electrical Engineering Alan Fitchett died of Covid.

Laura Juniper, his daughter, is also calling for educators to get the vaccine.

Alan, from Chorleywood, Herts., had worked in education for almost three decades and could have retired at 65, but he wanted to finish the academic year.

Laura said: "He didn’t want to let his students down."

Data on the number of teachers and support staff who have died from Covid-19 has not been reported since June.

The most recent data from the Office for National Statisitcs showed between March 9 and May 25 that 90 teachers and support staff had died.

ONS has said that new data will be available on Monday and will include teaching staff.

It comes after Education Secretary Gavin Williamson promised at least two weeks' notice would be given to parents before schools would reopen, meaning families find out if schools will open after half term next week.

Speaking on Good Morning Britian yesterday, Mr Williamson could only promise kids would be back behind desks by Easter, and host Piers Morgan blasted him, saying: "You haven't got a clue do you?"

The Government has said it will review the national lockdown around February 15 - but it's likely that schools will be closed after that.

If the Government is to open schools after the half-term break as they promised, an announcement would have to come next week.

But ministers think this is unlikely and schools will have to remain shut for longer.

Yesterday, Mr Williamson vowed that "schools will be the first to open" and the decision will be taken "as soon as the scientific advice is there".

He said: "My enthusiasm to see them open will ensure that if we can get schools open at the earliest moment, then that is what we'll be doing.

"We'll give teachers and parents time to prepare and give them good notice of it. But we want to see school children back.

"We'd aim to give teachers, pupils and parents two weeks' notice so they're able to get ready and we'll always be looking for how we can get schools open for all at the earliest possible moment."

Schools will open at the 'earliest opportunity' and parents will get two weeks' notice, Gavin Williamson promises

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