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The DfE suggests plans to be put in place to, for example, adjust timings for the day, to reduce contact between adults and children and between children.  There is little detail.

Questions for reps to ask:

  • How does the school propose to ensure social distancing at the start and end of each school day?
  • If it is planned to undertake temperature checks, how will this be managed safely in terms of social distancing between the child and member of staff and to avoid queues building up?
  • What measures are in place to protect staff and pupils who may at times need to use physical interventions (in alternative provision (AP) and mainstream) to protect pupils from harming themselves or others? (They will clearly not be able to socially distance when doing this?)
  • In AP what measures are in place to ensure that enough appropriately trained staff are on site to support pupils with behavioural issues to keep safe?  How and what PPE will be used in this situation?
  • Is it practical to stagger arrival times, if so how?
  • How will parents be informed and the system monitored?
  • Is there sufficient staffing to monitor the safe arrival and departure of children at varying times?
  • How will overcrowding at the school gates or in the playground be prevented?
  • What will be expected of parents/carers in terms of social distancing and how will they be informed of arrangements?
  • Will parents/carers be instructed that they may not enter the premises other than in an emergency situation?
  • Will there be clear guidelines on entry to school about the procedures in place for essential visitors to the school?
  • Will there be social distancing measures in place for visitors to the school?
  • Will visitors working closely with pupils be offered PPE where necessary? 
  • How will other unauthorised visitors be kept away?
  • Will enough staff be available at the beginning of the day (and able to socially distance) to assist children in coming into school where needed (younger children/children with SEND/anxiety etc)?
  • How will break times operate to ensure social distancing?
  • What will happen in wet weather at break and lunchtimes?
  • What arrangements are in place to ensure that meals can be safely prepared and served?
  • How many separate lunch sittings will be needed to ensure social distancing and is sufficient staffing in place to manage this, even where someone may be absent?
  • Have families been told to provide water bottles?
  • How will breaks for staff operate?
  • Have assemblies and the coming together of other large groups, both staff and pupils, been suspended
  • Is there a system in place for isolating children who develop symptoms during the day, while they wait to be picked up?
  • Will all staff be sent home as soon as they report symptoms during the school day and will arrangements be in place to provide cover as necessary?
  • Have off site visits been suspended?
  • What are the plans for ensuring that staff can travel safely to and from school?
  • For those who have no car and cannot walk or cycle, how can they safely travel to school, when use of public transport is discouraged?  (note: car sharing other than between members of the same household should not happen).  A safe travel plan for each individual member of staff need to be agreed.
  • Where school transport operates under normal circumstances, how will this operate at this time, ensuring social distancing and hygiene arrangements?

Are you satisfied that these issues have been resolved to your satisfaction in time for the start of extended opening?  Yes / No

On to checklist step 6