Coronavirus: Ofqual chief quits and latest on mask advice in schools

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Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus outbreak this Tuesday evening. We'll have another update for you on Wednesday morning.

1. Ofqual chief quits after exams chaos

The head of England's exams regulator, Sally Collier, has resigned after thousands of students' marks were downgraded for exams they were unable to sit because of the coronavirus pandemic. The Ofqual chief had been under fire after a controversial algorithm had changed A-level marks, triggering accusations of unfairness. It led to many students losing their university places before a government U-turn meant teachers' estimated grades could be used after all.

Image source, PARLIAMENT TV
Image caption,
Sally Collier refused requests for interviews last week

2. PM: Schools mask advice could change

The government could yet change the advice on wearing face masks in schools in England. The official guidance is that masks are not required by teachers or pupils, but Boris Johnson said: "We will look at changing medical evidence as we go on and if we need to change the advice we will." Scottish secondary school pupils must wear face coverings in corridors and communal areas from next Monday. Parents have been telling the BBC about their general fears around the big return to school, and BBC Reality Check has looked at the risks.

Media caption,

Boris Johnson: “If we need to change the advice then of course we will”

3. Birmingham bars and restaurants put on notice

Restaurants, pubs and bars in Birmingham which fail to manage the risk of coronavirus could be shut down. The city was placed on a government watchlist last week over its infection rate. Even though that is now falling, "enhanced measures" - agreed with the government - will allow council officers and police to close businesses which are not following the guidance on preventing the spread of Covid-19. At the weekend, police said they broke up 70 unlicensed gatherings in Birmingham.

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
Birmingham was placed on a government watchlist last week

4. Notts woman 'first to catch coronavirus in UK'

The earliest person to contract coronavirus within the UK can now be identified as a 75-year-old woman from Nottinghamshire, scientists believe. She tested positive on 21 February, according to analysis of samples by the University of Nottingham, and is also understood to be first in the UK to die after contracting Covid-19. In June, it was established there was no "patient zero" in the UK's epidemic.

Image source, Getty Images

5. Oven ready: Bake Off's big return

The Great British Bake Off will return to our screens this autumn looking no different than before. The show was filmed at a location in July housing all cast, crew, hotel staff and members of their families - and the team had to self-isolate for nine days and take three Covid-19 tests before entering the hotel. Kelly Webb-Lamb, deputy director of programmes for Channel 4, said it was an "incredible feat" to get the show back into production.

Image source, Channel 4
Image caption,
Bake-Off addicts will see Prue Leith and co back in action soon

And don't forget...

Find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page.

Plus, the BBC's Laura Foster explains how you can look after someone who catches the virus in their own home.

Image source, BBC

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