Latest COVID-19 update for schools and education settings
England has moved back to Plan A on 27 January and we expect the national picture to continue to change over the coming months, which will require schools to continue to adapt to changing guidance.
COVID-19 continues to circulate widely in Gloucestershire and we continue to see very high case rates in our communities. Rates are particularly high in the school age population, and our highest rates are amongst our primary age population.
We expect that high case rates will continue this term and it will be inevitable that we will see cases of COVID-19 within schools. Schools will need to continue to manage transmission within their setting; they are continuing to work extremely hard to mitigate the impact of high rates of staff absence due to Covid, and other winter illnesses, and minimise any further disruption to learning.
The Department for Education announced on 20th January that face coverings for pupils Year 7 and above in classrooms will no longer be routinely recommended. As of the 27th January, face coverings for staff, visitors, and pupils aged Year 7 and above in communal settings will no longer be routinely recommended.
Many schools are experiencing outbreaks, however, and may request additional control measures, such as reduced mixing and face coverings in communal or crowded areas, to reduce the risk of further transmission.