Schools set for September return
Posted on : 09 Jul 2020
Education Minister Kirsty Williams has confirmed that the autumn term will start on September 1st and schools should now prepare for the return of all pupils.
It is anticipated that schools may want to focus on priority year groups in the first week or two, such as those starting secondary schools, those sitting exams next summer or those in reception classes.
She has stressed that, in the interests of all children and young people, all schools will be open to all pupils by the 14th September at the very latest.
Cllr Philippa Marsden, Leader of Caerphilly Council said, “I welcome the Minister’s plan to allow schools to safely welcome pupils back in September, in line with all necessary safety measures and Welsh Government guidance.”
“We also welcome the £29million pledge by Welsh Government to recruit extra staff to support the recovery phase, minimise the impacts on pupils, and continue the ongoing work to raise school standards.”
The past few months have been a very challenging time for the whole education sector. Many of pupils have been anxious about the impact of the outbreak and the associated loss of learning, as well as not being able to see their friends.
Schools have been working hard to get pupils safely back into the classroom to check in and catch up before the start of the summer holidays. This announcement will no doubt bring additional pressures to make sure that plans are in place ready for the September return.
Schools will organise planning and preparation days to review risk assessments, processes and associated systems to ensure individual sites can welcome pupils and staff back safely.
“I’m sure parents will have many questions and queries, but we are working closely with schools to ensure they have the relevant details to update all parents accordingly. Further, supportive information will also be provided through our website and social media channels” added Cllr Marsden.
Welsh Government guidance will be issued early next week and it is expected that, as the situation evolves, the guidance will be continuously updated. Specific issues such as school transport, catering and cleaning will be worked through in detail over the next few weeks and further guidance will be provided in due course.