COVID-19 Return to School Arrangements

Angus Council schools reopen for staff on Tuesday 10 August, and for children and young people on Wednesday 11 August.

The First Minister has announced that Scotland will move ‘beyond Level 0’ on 09 August. Updated guidance has been prepared for schools and is available via this link  Scottish Government Guidance for Schools .

It has been agreed that many of the Covid-19 mitigations and safety measures in place at the end of term in June will remain in place for a period of at least six weeks. This is to enable monitoring of the impact of the return to school on Covid-19 case numbers.

Mitigations remaining in place will include:

  • Physical distancing of at least one metre distancing between all staff, and between staff and pupils.
  • Face coverings to be worn at all times by staff and learners in secondary schools.
  • Enhanced cleaning, ventilation and hygiene measures.

There are changes to some measures to be implemented as soon as possible which include:

  • Removing the requirement to maintain groups or ‘bubbles’ in schools.
  • On dedicated school transport only adults and young people aged 12 and over should wear a face covering.
  • Changes to the arrangements for self-isolation and contact tracing.

Our schools will be working to update their risk assessments and other documents to reflect the latest guidance. Changes to specific arrangements at your child’s school will be provided directly by the head teacher.


What to do if your child is unwell

If your child, or anyone in the household becomes unwell at any time with COVID related symptoms, the whole household should self isolate and arrange for Covid-19 tests. Details of how to book at test can be found on the NHS Inform website and UK Government: Get a PCR Test.

If you, or a member of your household, receive a positive lateral flow test result you and your household should self-isolate and you should arrange a confirmatory PCR test via the link above.

Staff, children and young people are strongly encouraged to inform their schools of any positive tests when reporting absences.

If your child’s PCR test is positive for Covid-19 you will be contacted directly by the NHS Tayside Test & Protect Team. You (or your child if they are able to) will be asked to provide details of close contacts.


Contact Tracing and Self-isolation

New arrangements for self-isolation and contact tracing will be in place from 9 August 2021.

  • Any individual who develops symptoms of Covid-19 should self-isolate immediately and go for a PCR test.
  • Adults (18+) identified as close contacts will be required to self-isolate and book a PCR test. If the test is positive, the individual continues to self-isolate. If the test result is negative, the individual has been fully vaccinated for at least two weeks and remains free of symptoms, self-isolation ends.
  • Children and young people aged five to 17 who are identified as a close contact should self-isolate immediately and book a PCR test. If their test is positive, the individual should continue to self-isolate. If their test result is negative and the individual remains free of symptoms, self-isolation ends.
  • Children under the age of five who are identified as a close contact are exempt from self-isolation. These children are encouraged to take a PCR test, but it is not a requirement to end self-isolation

The blanket isolation of whole classes in schools and early learning and childcare (ELC) settings will no longer be routine. A more targeted approach will identify close contacts at highest risk of infection.

Parents / carers will be informed of positive cases in their child’s schools or ELC setting using a standard letter.

In addition, schools with positive cases will be listed on our schools COVID cases page so that parent and carers with particular concerns can access up to date information.

Please see the NHS Inform website following website for the very latest guidance on testing, self-isolation and contact tracing.


New Primary 1s

In line with the published guidance, parents/carers of children starting in Primary 1 will generally not be able to access the school building or grounds on the first day of term.

For a limited number of children who require additional support, alternative arrangements may be possible. Please contact your school directly to discuss with the Head Teacher.


Drop-off and Pick-Up Arrangements

Please ensure you are aware of the guidance in place for your school regarding drop-off and pick-up arrangements.

In particular we are asking people to:

  • Avoid gathering at school gates.
  • Wear a face covering where required.
  • Maintain physical distancing.

Asymptomatic Testing Programme

Staff in all settings, and young people attending secondary school are being asked to consider taking a lateral flow test prior to returning to school. Where possible, we’re recommending that this should be completed either the evening before or the morning of the return to school.

Lateral flow home test kits are available to anyone who does not have COVID-19 symptoms. They can be ordered online and delivered through the post. Test kits can also be collected from test sites, or from community pharmacies.

Once term resumes, test kits for young people will be available direct from school.


Vaccinations

Certain groups of young people aged 12-17 will be offered the Covid-19 vaccination from August 2021. The key groups are:

  • All young people aged 16-17.
  • Young people aged 12-17 with certain conditions.
  • Young people aged 12-17 who are household contacts of other adults and children who are vulnerable.

If your child is included in this offer you will be contacted directly by NHS Tayside with further details.