THE sun shone on West Belfast primary schools this morning as staff welcomed back their Primary Seven pupils.

Like all other schools across the island St Teresa's primary on the Glen Road had closed its doors back in March due to Covid-19 lockdown. This morning Principal Terry Rodgers told the Andersonstown News that the children “beamed with joy as they made their first tentative steps back into the school playground”.

“We have worked tirelessly to ensure the children feel safe to return to school," he said.

"Whilst the school day may have a number of changes we promise to make this momentous day an exciting one for all the children in our school.

"This is the day we have been so looking forward to and we are delighted that the school will once again be filled with the sounds of children learning and having fun."

CLASSROOM: St Teresa's pupils getting used to the new regulations
CLASSROOM: St Teresa's pupils getting used to the new regulations

St John the Baptist Principal Chris Donnelly said he and his staff at the Finaghy Road North primary were "delighted” to welcome back the Primary Seven pupils this morning.

“Myself and the Vice-Principal were outside the school this morning to meet and greet the children and their parents to ensure that all were adhering to and becoming familiar with the new regulations with regards to the designated entrance. We also had staggered times to begin.

"Most importantly it’s about getting the children back to some type of routine, becoming reacclimatised to the classroom environment and the learning environment which is the most conducive to them making progress – not just in an academic term – but also for their development in a social and emotional sense.”