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Back to school in Highland 2021

17th August 2021

Schools across Highland welcome pupils and staff back to classrooms today Tuesday, 17 August 2021. Staff have worked to make sure COVID-19 safety measures are in place and in line with national guidance.

Chair of the Council's Education Committee, Cllr John Finlayson said: "I would like to offer a warm welcome to all of our new pupils and staff who are joining our schools this year, and to everyone returning from a very well deserved summer break following a challenging school year.

"Although we are in a better position with COVID-19 than this time last year, it is important to be mindful that coronavirus is still present within our communities. There have been recent positive changes as we have moved beyond Level 0 nationally and in schools, we can bring back some participatory activities. However, we must continue to follow the COVID-19 rules and guidance, which are in place to help protect each other as best as we can, both inside and outside of school."

The Scottish Government updated their Covid-19 guidance on reducing the risks in schools. This guidance includes some positive changes for this term as children and young people can now engage in all drama, music, physical education, and dance activity in schools. However, some COVID-19 safety mitigations will continue to remain in place. See https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-reducing-the-risks-in-schools/

Face coverings should be worn in the following circumstances unless you are exempt:

In primary schools, face coverings should be worn by adults where physical distancing with other adults, children, and young people cannot be maintained and when moving around the building or indoor communal spaces.
In secondary schools, face coverings should be worn at all times for all staff and pupils.
In line with the updated guidance for public transport, individuals aged 12 and over when travelling on dedicated school transport.
Physical distancing of at least 1m between adults, and between adults and pupils, will remain in place for the time being. Children and young people do not need to social distance from one another; however, it is encouraged between secondary school pupils where possible.

Pupils who were previously asked to shield are expected to return to school unless they have been advised by medical practitioners that they are unfit to do so.

Importantly, if you have symptoms of the virus, you should not attend school and should book a PCR test. There are new rules on self-isolation for close contacts of anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 which can be found on our webpage.

Find out further information, access resources and support at www.highland.gov.uk/backtoschool

 

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