School children aged 12-15 will be able to get a coronavirus vaccine in school after the October half-term.
Health secretary Sajid Javid encouraged school students to get vaccinated to “protect themselves and the people around them”.
“The vaccines are safe and will help keep children in the classroom,” he said.
Pupils are also being urged to take a lateral flow test before the end of half-term to prevent the spread of coronavirus in schools.
The decision to vaccinate teenagers came despite the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) refusing to recommend a universal rollout vaccination programme for children aged 12-15.
In their ruling, the JCVI claimed that the virus presents a very low risk for children in this age group and that inoculation would offer only minor benefits.
But chief medical officers told a Downing Street press conference on Monday that there were other benefits, including reducing the disruption to the school term.
More than 600,000 young people have been vaccinated since the jabs rollout was extended to include 12- to 15-year-olds at the end of September, NHS England said.
Some 163,000 young people received a jab in the week after the national booking system opened up to them from 22 October.
A further 140,000 children have their vaccine booked over the next few weeks, NHS England added.
Dr Nikki Kanani, GP and deputy lead for the NHS Covid-19 vaccine programme, said: “As our children return to the classroom, our efforts to vaccinate children will not stop – hundreds more schools will be vaccinating this week.
“It’s really important that we continue with the same enthusiasm if we want to ensure children get to stay in the classroom with their fellow pupils this winter, and so I encourage all parents and guardians to head online and read the information on vaccinating your child, so you can make an informed decision.”
Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism
By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists
Already have an account? sign in
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies