Coronavirus: Schools, children and families
Covid-19 cases in schools
We have taken many precautions in our schools to limit the areas pupils access and the people they have contact with. This limits the spread of the virus and means that, if a positive case of Covid-19 is identified in a school, Public Health teams can confidently identify who has been in contact with that person.
Parents/carers of children who have been in direct contact with a confirmed case will receive a letter from Public Health and/or a telephone call from 'Test & Protect' asking them to stay home for 14 days. This 14 days will start from the last exposure, which is likely to be before the confirmed case was tested.
If your child is asked to stay home because they have been in contact with a confirmed case at school, other household members do not need to self-isolate providing all household members are well. Siblings can continue to attend school if they have not been identified as a close contact and no one in the household is unwell.
If you have not been contacted by Public Health then your child can continue to attend school providing they and the rest of the household are well.
See our Quick Guide [163Kb] for guidance on reporting sickness absence if your child becomes unwell during the current pandemic.
What to do if your child develops symptoms of COVID 19
If your child develops symptoms of COVID-19, they must not come to school. You should arrange for your child to be tested and all household members should stay at home during this time.
Anyone with symptoms will be eligible for testing and further information on testing can be found on NHS Inform.
If the test is positive your child should remain at home for at least 10 days from the date when their symptoms appeared. All other household members must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days.
Returning from a country that's on the quarantine list
If your child has returned from a country that is on the quarantine list, please do not send them to school until they have completed the 14 days quarantine period.
Scottish Government guidance
We are following key national guidance issued by the Scottish Government to help ensure a safe and effective return to school for children, young people and staff:
- Excellence and equity during the Covid-19 pandemic - A strategic framework for reopening schools, early learning and childcare provision in Scotland (21 May).
- Scientific evidence on schools and ELC settings (26 May) the basis for the Scottish Government's decisions about reopening schools.
- COVID-19: reopening schools guidance (28 May) non-statutory guidance for local authorities and schools in their planning for a safe phased reopening on 11 August.
- COVID-19: Physical distancing in education and childcare settings was published on 15 May.
- COVID-19: Support for continuity in learning (5 June), guidance by the Education Recovery Group for local authorities, early learning centres and schools. It is also relevant to partners e.g. community learning and development (CLD), youth workers, colleges, universities and adult learning. This focuses on the support required for learners, parents, carers and practitioners.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on preparing for the start of the new school term in August 2020 updated on 25 August with new guidance on use of face coverings by pupils and staff - see also the summary version of the full guidance.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) Phase 3: guidance on re-opening school age childcare services published on 30 July.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on organised activities for children published on 25 September.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on reducing the risks in schools published on 30 October.
Free School Meal direct payments - October 2020 holidays
Following the previous decision to continue direct payments for free school meals during the summer holiday period, the Council has agreed that these payments will continue to be provided over the October holiday period for those families entitled to free school meals who receive a qualifying benefit.
A payment will be made directly into parents'/carers' bank accounts by 30 September 2020 to cover the holiday period of 5 October to 16 October 2020. If you are in receipt of a qualifying benefit (listed below), your child currently receives free school meals, and you received a school clothing grant over the summer holiday period, you do not need for you to contact us - a payment will be made automatically to you. Education and Children's Services will contact parents directly where bank account details are not currently held. If you are in receipt of a qualifying benefit for free school meals but did not receive a school clothing grant, please contact us at ECSSchools@pkc.gov.uk.
Qualifying benefits are:
- Income Support (IS)
- Income based Job Seeker's Allowance (IBJSA)
- Any income related element of Employment and Support Allowance
- Child Tax Credit (CTC), but not Working Tax Credit, and your income is less than £16,105.
- Child Tax Credit (CTC) and Working Tax Credit (WTC) and your income is less than £7,330
- If you are between 16 and 18 years old and receive any of these benefits in your own right, you can claim free school meals for yourself
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
Remote Learning Hub
The Council's Education and Children's Services has established a Remote Learning Hub. The site has been created for parents, pupils and staff to access key information and guidance whilst working and learning from home during school closures. Specific sections have been created to allow for ease of use and to ensure you can access the information that is most appropriate for you. The Remote Learning Hub will be updated regularly with the latest information and added to ensure the content and messages are current. We hope parents, pupils and staff will find the site, and the information it provides, to be useful.
If you have queries about provision for your children, please view our Coronavirus: FAQs - reopening of schools or call 0345 30 111 00.