Coronavirus: School thanks NHS with Nightingale name change

  • Published
The Florence Nightingale Academy sign
Image caption,
The Florence Nightingale Academy, in Eastwood, was formerly known as Brookhill Leys Primary School

A primary school has changed its name to The Florence Nightingale Academy to thank the NHS during the pandemic.

The new name for Brookhill Leys Primary School, in Eastwood, Nottinghamshire, came as millions of pupils returned to school on Wednesday.

Head teacher Jacquie Sainsbury, who contracted coronavirus just after lockdown, said it was an "opportunity to acknowledge and thank our NHS".

Florence Nightingale - a nurse in the 1800s - changed the way people nursed.

The Derbyshire-raised nurse was a pioneer of stopping the spread of infection and disease in hospitals.

Image source, Wikipedia/Henry Hering/National Portrait Gallery
Image caption,
Florence Nightingale went to the Crimean War to nurse wounded soldiers

Temporary hospitals were set up in her name to treat large numbers of coronavirus patients during the pandemic.

In addition, 10 "Nightingale Courts" have been made available in England and Wales to tackle the impact of the disease on the judicial system.

Ms Sainsbury said: "The new school name was chosen from many suggestions, for the strong independent leader Florence was and the positive changes she brought, still effective today.

"It was also an opportunity to acknowledge and thank those amongst us who play their part in our NHS, particularly this year of 2020."

Image caption,
Head teacher Jacquie Sainsbury said she was still suffering months after contracting coronavirus

The head teacher added contracting the virus had "knocked me sideways" and she was still suffering months on.

"Having to prepare a school for reopening when you've not got the energy you normally have - it's really serious," she said.

The academy, which is now part of The White Hills Park Trust and teaches children aged between three and 11, has made changes to reduce the spread of the disease including no assemblies, hot dinners or parents in the school.

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