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Schools to be partially re-opened "for childcare and supervision"

Schools to be partially re-opened

Tuesday 02 February 2021

Schools to be partially re-opened "for childcare and supervision"


Education has revealed plans to begin re-opening school settings to some children of essential workers next week in order to reduce the burden on those who are playing a key role in the community during lockdown.

Head teachers and leaders of early years settings have been reaching out to some parents to find out whether they would like to send their children into schools and other educational settings for childcare and supervision during the half-term break.

"Teams of officers from ESC and HSC have been hard at work to develop a system which will safely allow targeted groups of vulnerable children and children of some essential workers to benefit from on-site care next week," said a spokesman for Education, Sport & Culture. 

"This plan involves a robust testing system, which will see any children or staff tested before entering a setting. They will then be continually tested on a rolling basis going forwards."

In the first island-wide lockdown, schools remained open to all vulnerable children and the children of all essential and critical workers to allow them to work. 

The new, more selective criteria means that only children whose parents are both essential workers (unless in a single parent household), AND where all adults in the home need to leave the house to work will be allowed to attend. 

"Early Years Settings, Special Schools, Primary Schools and Secondary Schools (for pupils in Years 7, 8 and 9 primarily) will be initially prioritised in this new programme of testing," said ESC.

"The College of FE will continue to offer remote support as required for any learners who need contact next week. Children attending the island’s special schools and who may have complex medical needs will be supported through a bespoke programme of partnership support between HSC and ESC and will be invited into school on an individual basis."

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