The government now expects all children to return to school in September. Whilst many parents and children will be looking forward to this, we do understand that some of you may feel anxious or have questions. Our Pastoral Team will work with any families that need additional support to feel confident about returning to school. There is a great resource here for anyone that might be feeling anxious. Please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org should you need to discuss any pastoral care we could provide.
The full government guidance on attendance can be found here:
In March when the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak was increasing, we made clear no parent would be penalised or sanctioned for their child’s non-attendance at school.
Now the circumstances have changed and it is vital for all children to return to school to minimise as far as possible the longer-term impact of the pandemic on children’s education, wellbeing and wider development.
Missing out on more time in the classroom risks pupils falling further behind. Those with higher overall absence tend to achieve less well in both primary and secondary school. School attendance will therefore be mandatory again from the beginning of the autumn term. This means from that point, the usual rules on school attendance will apply, including:
parents’ duty to secure that their child attends regularly at school where the child is a registered pupil at school and they are of compulsory school age;
schools’ responsibilities to record attendance and follow up absence
the availability to issue sanctions, including fixed penalty notices in line with local authorities’ codes of conduct
Pupils who are shielding or self-isolating
The following government guidance is in place for shielding vulnerable people and can be found here
We now know much more about coronavirus (COVID-19) and so in future there will be far fewer children and young people advised to shield whenever community transmission rates are high. Therefore, the majority of pupils will be able to return to school. You should note however that:
a small number of pupils will still be unable to attend in line with public health advice because they are self-isolating and have had symptoms or a positive test result themselves; or because they are a close contact of someone who has coronavirus (COVID-19)
shielding advice for all adults and children will pause on 1 August, subject to a continued decline in the rates of community transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19). This means that even the small number of pupils who will remain on the shielded patient list can also return to school, as can those who have family members who are shielding. Read the current advice on shielding
if rates of the disease rise in local areas, children (or family members) from that area, and that area only, will be advised to shield during the period where rates remain high and therefore they may be temporarily absent (see below).
some pupils no longer required to shield but who generally remain under the care of a specialist health professional may need to discuss their care with their health professional before returning to school (usually at their next planned clinical appointment). You can find more advice from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health at COVID-19 - ‘shielding’ guidance for children and young people.