Schools and education
Last updated 24 September 2020
Schools, colleges, sixth forms and early years settings are reopening.
Opening schools safely
The Chief and Deputy Medical Officers of the UK, on the 23 August, released a statement outlining their view that ‘very few, if any, children or teenagers will come to long-term harm from coronavirus due solely to attending school’. The statement outlines a range of evidence they have taken into account in forming this judgement. This also includes evidence on the transmission risk for teachers, other staff working in schools, and parents, as well as the potential impact of opening schools on wider transmission. You can read the statement from the UK Chief Medical officers on schools and childcare reopening on GOV.UK.
Both the Chief and Deputy Medical Officers and the government have stressed that there is no completely risk-free option available to us, and that the risks from opening schools up again have to be balanced against the impacts on children from not attending school.
What you'll need to do
To make sure that the return to school is as safe as possible, we've made a range of changes. We'll continue to review the arrangements we have put in place to maintain school as a safe environment.
To help us do this, you can support us in the following ways:
- if your child, or anyone else at home has symptoms of coronavirus (a new continuous cough, a fever, or loss or change of taste or smell) the entire household needs to stay at home, and children cannot attend school. The person with symptoms will need to stay at home for 10 days, and all other household members needs to stay at home for 14 days. Anyone with symptoms should book a coronavirus test online or call 119. Please arrange a test as soon as possible, as early test results help us to protect our school community. If your child is unwell and you're not sure whether to send them to school, you can find guidance on the NHS website
- let us know straight away if anyone in your household develops symptoms, and of any test results (positive or negative). If you need to contact the school to report an absence, we'll ask about coronavirus symptoms and test results
- if your child develops symptoms during the school day, we'll need to isolate them away from the classroom, and ask you to collect them as soon as possible. Please make sure that you're contactable throughout the school day, and that the contact details we hold are up to date
- make sure that you follow the social distancing arrangements that have been put in place, particularly at the start and end of the school day
If your child travels to school on public transport, or if your school has decided to require the use of face coverings, make sure that your child comes to school with at least one plain, clean, reusable (cotton) face covering that fastens behind the ears and a clean, resealable plastic bag to keep it in during lessons. Wearing a face coverings is only recommended on public transport, in the corridors and other shared spaces within the building, and not in classrooms.