Education Secretary Gavin Williamson

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson put it bluntly – he can’t tell parents, pupils and teachers when schools will re-open.

There’s been a lot of speculation that this could be one of the first steps the government takes on the path back to normal life.

But ministers say it’s still too soon to say when that could happen.

There are many options to consider, including whether younger pupils and those with exams next year could return to the classroom first.

The number of people in hospital with Covid-19 is plateauing or falling in most areas. But ministers are waiting for more scientific data before acting.

Other countries are starting to lift restrictions and the UK will be watching and learning from their experiences.

For now, they don’t want to dilute the message that staying at home and social distancing must continue.