Coronavirus Information 1st October 2020

1st October 2020

This is your daily email to keep you updated on the government’s response to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Guidance on use of face covering when travelling to school or college

Children aged 11 and over are legally required to wear a face covering on public transport in England, unless exempt for health, age or disability reasons.

In accordance with advice from Public Health England, we recommend that local authorities advise children and young people aged 11 and over to wear a face covering when travelling on dedicated school transport, unless they are exempt. Coronavirus (COVID-19) usually spreads by droplets from coughs, sneezes and speaking. When used correctly, wearing a face covering may reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) droplets in certain circumstances, helping to protect others.

Schools should support local authorities in promoting the use of face coverings when travelling to and from school, and help them to resolve any issues of non-compliance where appropriate.

The ‘Hands. Face. Space.’ campaign urges everyone to continue to wash their hands, cover their face and make space to control infection rates. The NHS has released a ‘Hands. Face. Space.’ video that may be a useful resource when communicating the importance of wearing a face covering on transport directly to children and young people.

Further information on face coverings can be found in our guidance on transport to school and other places of education: autumn term 2020.

The information below hasn’t changed since our last update

Translation of guidance for parents and carers on early years providers, schools and colleges in the autumn term

We have translated our guidance for parents and carers with children in nursery, school, or college in the autumn term.

The guidance is available in the following languages:

Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline opening hours

The Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline remains available to answer questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) relating to education and children’s social care. Please listen carefully to the available options and select the most appropriate to your nursery, school, or college’s current situation.

Staff, parents and young people can contact this helpline by calling:

Phone: 0800 046 8687

Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm
Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 4pm

Information education settings should have to hand when they call for advice on a positive case

Public Health England’s (PHE) dedicated advice service, delivered by NHS Business Services Authority, is available to early years settings, schools, colleges and out of school settings. The service is for those needing support on the action they should take when they have been informed of a confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in their setting (i.e. a pupil or staff member testing positive).

It can be reached by calling the Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline on 0800 046 8687 and selecting option 1 to report a positive test within your setting. This option will take you through to a dedicated team of NHS Business Services Authority advisors who will work through a risk assessment with you to identify close contacts, and will inform you what action is needed based on the latest public health advice. Advisors will be responsible for referring more complex cases to the PHE regional health protection team, as necessary, following a triaging of your circumstances during the call.

Phone: 0800 046 8687 – option 1 to report a positive test within your setting

Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm
Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 4pm

When you call for advice, please have the following information to hand relating to the positive coronavirus (COVID-19) case in your setting as you will need to discuss this with the call adviser:

  •          the number of positive cases in your setting, whether the person who tested positive is displaying symptoms and if so, the date of the onset of the symptoms (if known)
  •          the dates that the person who tested positive was in attendance at the setting so that we can identify if the person was infections whilst on site
  •          for key stage 2, 3, 4 and 5, the seating plan for all lessons, and (where relevant) the timetable, for the person who has tested positive. This will help to support identification of close contacts with that person
  •          for key stage 2, 3, 4 and 5, if the person who has tested positive is a member of staff, records of any instance of close contact with other members of staff or students
  •          if the person who has tested positive is a pupil, records of any definite face to face contact with the individual and details of their friendship group within the setting

You should continue to inform your local authority of a positive case in your setting.