Schools (COVID-19 information)

Updated 05:01.21 11:43

Blackburn with Darwen is in National Lockdown: Stay at Home. More information.

Testing and self-isolating

The Government have said that colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open for vulnerable children and children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term.

Schools will be in touch directly with parents and carers.

Rapid testing and negative results do not mean that there is no risk of transmission. Please continue to follow all covid guidelines.

We have produced a quick guide for parents/carers of school children.

Please see our Get Tested section of the website for further details.

Attendance at school and clubs

The Government have said that colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open for vulnerable children and children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term.

Schools will be in touch directly with parents and carers.

Transport

The Government have said that colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open for vulnerable children and children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term.

For those children still attending schools, the schools will be in touch directly regarding transport arrangements.

Sharing school journeys

We advise that you try not to share a car with anyone who is outside of your household or social bubble as per government guidance. Further information.

Travelling to school on public transport

Where possible, children and young people are being encouraged to walk or cycle to school. This remains the safest way to get to school. It may also be possible for some families to drive their children to and from school in their own cars, but we would ask you to park safely with consideration for the school community and local residents.

Where it is not possible for your child to use any of these ways to travel to school, many schools will have staggered their start and finish times so that the build-up of pupils on public transport during peak times can be reduced. Your child’s school will let you know of any relevant changes.

Face coverings are required at all times on public transport except for children under the age of 11.

Travelling to school on dedicated school transport

For those children still attending schools, the schools will be in touch directly regarding transport arrangements.

Face coverings

School grounds

Your child’s school will provide further information on arrangements within school grounds.

Face coverings inside school premises

Children in all secondary schools in Blackburn with Darwen are being advised to wear a face covering in communal areas and corridors where it may be difficult to maintain social distancing. Children should wash their hands or use alcohol gel before and after touching the face covering and store in a plastic bag when not in use. Children will not be required to wear a face covering whilst in the classroom. Children in primary school are not required to use a face covering. Children who cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability will be exempt.

If you have concerns about your child wearing a face covering please contact your child’s school directly.

Travelling to school on public transport

Face coverings are required at all times on public transport except for children under the age of 11 or those children with an exemption.

In school

If another child in the same class tests positive for COVID-19

If your child has been in close contact during the previous 48 hours with the child who has tested positive, you will either be informed by your child’s school that your child must stay at home (self-isolate) for 10 days, or you will be contacted by someone from the NHS Test and Trace service who will talk you through any actions you need to take. Find out more information on testing and tracing.

If there are COVID-19 cases at my child’s school

If a school has a confirmed COVID-19 case among pupils or staff or if they see an increase in pupil or staff absence due to suspected COVID-19, they will contact the local health protection team. This team will advise the school if additional action is needed, but it is unlikely that the whole school will need to be closed.

Pupil and family wellbeing

Childcare bubbles

From Wednesday 2nd December support bubbles have been expanded. From this date you can form a support bubble with another household if any of the following apply to you:

  • you are the only adult in your household (any other members of the household having been under 18 on 12 June 2020) or are the only adult who does not have a disability that needs continuous care
  • you have a child under 1
  • you live with a child under 5 with a disability that needs continuous care.

You may change your support bubble provided that:

  • your household, or the one you intend to form a new support bubble with, meets at least one of the criteria under ‘Who can make a support bubble’
  • the other household is not already part of a support bubble which they intend to remain a part of

If you decide to change your support bubble, you should treat your previous bubble as a separate household for 14 days before forming a new bubble.

Playdates and parties should not be taking place.

You can continue to use early years and childcare settings, including childminders and providers offering before or after school clubs or other out-of-school settings for children. You can also continue to employ nannies, including those living outside of the region.

Someone in our household has COVID-19 symptoms; what should we do?

COVID-19 symptoms include a new continuous cough, a high temperature, or a loss or change of taste or smell. If your child or anyone in their household develops symptoms, it is essential you isolate immediately, get tested and inform the school, so they can take necessary steps. Do not send your child to school or to any out of school setting/club whilst you are waiting for the results. COVID-19 tests are available online or by calling 119. Find out more information on testing and tracing.

Foreign travel

If your child has arrived in the UK from travelling abroad, they will need to self-isolate for ten days after their return to the UK unless the country they visited is deemed exempt. Please take the time to check exempt countries.

Resources

Statement by the Chief Medical Officer regarding return to school

Returning to school in September 2020. A letter to parents.

School transport guidance and guidelines.

Children can carry this letter if they want to show they are exempt from wearing a face covering, either for a medical or personal reason.