LiveNI reports for first in time 150 days ZERO Covid-19 deaths in 24 hours - All children back at school on April 12 is what Education Minister Peter Weir will recommend to Executive this week - Loyalist Jim Wilson hangs up on live radio as Stephen Nolan grills him on Shankill Road scenes

Northern Ireland reported on Monday, for the first time in 150 days, a 24 hour period during which no Covid-19 deaths occurred, latest information from the Department of Health (DoH).

Monday, 8th March 2021, 6:16 pm

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P3 teacher Jessica Cargill with her class at Springfield Primary School in Belfast. Today marks the first day back for Pre-school, nursery and primary school pupils in P1-P3 have returned to classrooms across Northern Ireland.

LIVE BLOG: Coronavirus NI - PSNI now investigating possible Covid-19 breaches during Shankill Road celebrations of Rangers winning Scottish championship title

Last updated: Monday, 08 March, 2021, 16:31

NI reports for first in time 150 days ZERO Covid-19 deaths in 24 hours

Zero Covid-19 deaths occurred in Northern Ireland in the last 24 hours.

It’s the first time since October 10, 2020 that a full 24 hours has passed without a single Covid-related death occurring.

The DoH did however report two additional Covid-19 deaths but they both occurred outside of the 24 hour period to 10:OOam

It brings the total number of Covid-19 related deaths since the beginning of the pandemic to 2,077.

Two additional deaths recorded in 24 hours

Two more people have died with Covid-19 in Northern Ireland, the Department of Health said.

Another 144 people tested positive.

A total of 191 people are in hospital with the disease, 35 in intensive care.

ALL children back at school on April 12 is what Education Minister Peter Weir will recommend to Executive this week

Education Minister, Peter Weir, says he intends to recommend all children in Northern Ireland return to face-to-face learning after the Easter holidays.

Appearing on BBC Radio Ulster programme The Stephen Nolan Show on Monday morning, Minister Weir explained that he will include the recommendation in a paper he intends to bring before the Executive later this week.

The current situation sees all pre-school, nursery, primary one to three pupils all back in the classroom from today to March 22 when they will revert to remote learning before breaking off for Easter.

Years 12, 13 and 14 will return to classrooms on March 22.

No decision has been made concerning the remaining year groups.

The Executive is likely to meet to discuss this and other matters on Thursday.

First pupils return to schools in Northern Ireland since December

The first children to return to school since December will re-enter classrooms across Northern Ireland later - writes Rebecca Black, PA.

P1 to P3 pupils will return to class but are set to go back to remote learning after two weeks.

First Minister Arlene Foster has expressed hope that those primary pupils will ultimately be able to remain in school.

The Stormont Executive is expected to discuss the issue further this week.

On March 22, secondary school children in key exam years – years 12-14 – are to go back to class.

No date has yet been announced for the wider return of all children to school.

The children of key workers have been able to attend since the latest lockdown started in December but many have been engaged in learning from home.

The Stormont Executive published its Pathway to Recovery plan for exiting lockdown restrictions last week.

It sets out an emergence from lockdown in stages, described as lockdown, cautious first steps, gradual easing, further easing, and preparing for the future.

The blueprint does not include any target dates, with ministers instead insisting decisions on moving between stages will be based on scientific and medical evidence, not the calendar.

Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill has said ministers hope the process of exiting lockdown will be well advanced by June 10.

Loyalist Jim Wilson hangs up on live radio as Stephen Nolan grills him on scenes showing Rangers fans ignoring Covid-19 regulations by celebrating title win on Shankill

A Rangers fan waves a flag outside of the Ibrox Stadium after Rangers win the Scottish Premiership title.

Loyalist community worker, Jim Wilson, hung up on Stephen Nolan while discussing live on radio the scenes posted on social media of Rangers fans ignoring Covid-19 regulations and celebrating their team winning its first league title in a decade.

Mr. Wilson told Stephen Nolan that he attended the celebrations with his grandchildren and said he observed Covid-19 regulations at all times.

“Rangers fans out celebrating in the streets last night was not an essential journey,” said Stephen Nolan.

“It was an essential journey to me and my grandchildren”.

There was widespread shock at some of video footage and pictures of the scenes on the Shankill Road when they were shared on social media on Sunday.

“If you lot can do that last night...,” said Nolan.

Mr, Wilson interrupted saying: “Hold on Stephen - what way is that to talk about a community - ‘you lot’?

“That’s your attitude to loyalism - that’s always been your attitude towards loyalism.

“You and your media friends - best of luck, cheerio,” said Mr. Wilson before putting down the phone.

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