COVID-19
Covid-19 Dos and Don'ts

Covid-19 safety in schools.

These are minimum standards for keeping everyone safe and ensuring reasonable working conditions. If you and members are concerned about what is happening in your workplace, contact your branch.

Risk assessment

Do make sure risk assessments, including for individuals, are revised and updated to ensure appropriate safety measures are implemented. Risk assessments should be reviewed regularly and whenever there is a change in circumstances.
Don’t leave it up to your employer – you are entitled to be consulted about risk assessments.

Staff at higher risk

Do ensure individual risk assessments and working arrangements reflect personal circumstances.  For example, CEV staff may be advised to work from home on medical grounds by their GP/consultant; If in school, press for extra protections such as FFP2/FFP3 masks and well-ventilated classrooms.  Pregnant staff in their third trimester should work from home, or be suspended on full pay.
Don’t accept that individual risk assessments are set in stone – they must be revised as circumstances change.

Ventilation

Do ensure working areas are well ventilated and at a comfortable working temperature; see advice here.
Don’t accept that ventilation is no longer important – it is the key to safe working in this stage of the pandemic.

Hygiene and cleaning

Do urge secondary schools to encourage staff and students to wear face coverings, including in classrooms, particularly where cases are high.   
Don’t accept that anyone should be prevented from wearing a face covering if it helps them feel safer.

Mixing

Do argue that groups are kept as small as reasonably possible to minimise contact and mixing.
Don’t accept that social distancing is no longer an issue.

Face coverings

Do urge secondary schools to encourage staff and students to wear face coverings, including in classrooms, particularly where cases are high.   
Don’t accept that anyone should be prevented from wearing a face covering if it helps them feel safer.

Testing

Do assume that a positive LFT result means you have the virus.  Follow this up with a confirmatory PCR test
Don’t assume that a negative LFT result guarantees you don’t have the virus. 

Hygeine and cleaning

Do raise concerns if hand washing and sanitising systems for staff and pupils aren’t working or if you feel your school isn’t being properly cleaned. 
Don’t allow hand washing and sanitising standards to drop; and don’t take on cleaning duties if you are not employed as a cleaner.

Workload

Do ensure that normal entitlements, such as lunch breaks, directed time limits and PPA time are adhered to.
Don’t abandon the precautionary approach in relation to any non-essential work activities which risk spreading the virus.