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Gloucestershire Business News

Council helping Gloucestershire schools go back

Gloucestershire County Council is providing a package of measures to help teachers and pupils ahead of a phased return to school on Monday.

With many Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 pupils poised to return on June 1, schools are taking steps to reduce contact with smaller groups, potentially limited numbers and children possibly with a new teacher and in a different classroom.

Individual schools face the final decision on how they can operate safely, but the council has been supporting them with help including personal protective equipment and signage.

Every school in Gloucestershire will be supplied with a starter pack of PPE containing masks, gloves, goggles, aprons and sanitiser while the council will also help source future PPE if needed.

Signs, stickers and tape are also available to encourage social distancing and introduce a one-way traffic system around buildings.

They have also been given advice on things to consider in re-opening, testing and additional support if children struggle with going back to school.

Councillor Patrick Molyneux, cabinet member responsible for education, said: "Schools in Gloucestershire haven't closed - 90 per cent have remained open to children of key workers and vulnerable children since lockdown began in March.

"I'm really grateful for the work they've done in helping key workers keep up the fight against coronavirus.

"Schools are working hard now to plan to increase the number of pupils attending, once Government guidance allows."

He continued: "The county council is playing its part to support schools to make sure they have the help and support they need to do that safely and appropriately."

Priority will continue to be given to supporting vulnerable children and those of key workers.

Secondary schools will be making different arrangements and are making contact with the parents of students in Years 10 and 12 to confirm their individual schools' plans.

Parents can contact the council's COVID-19 education team at covidschoolenquiries@gloucestershire.gov.uk  or by calling 01452 426015.

For more information about the plans for a phased return to school, visit the council's frequently asked questions page  

The council has set up a parent advice line offering confidential advice, guidance and emotional support on any aspect of parenting and family life at 0800 542 02 02.

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