14 May 2021
Dear Parents and Carers,
Changes to National Guidance on the Wearing of Coverings in Schools
On Monday, 10 May 2021 the Department for Education (DfE) updated its guidance to schools regarding the wearing of face coverings in schools. This guidance now states that from Monday, 17 May 2021 it is no longer necessary for students in secondary schools to wear a face covering and that school staff are now only expected to wear a face covering in communal areas and corridors where social distancing cannot be achieved, although we will support any of our staff who choose to continue to wear a face covering.
However, despite the change to the national guidance, we have been informed locally that the COVID-19 rates remain notably above the national rates and, as such, have received advice from the public health team at Barnsley Local Authority that students should continue to wear a face covering when moving around the school in corridors and in communal areas. Whilst we had all been looking forward to the relaxation of the wearing of face coverings in school, we also recognise the expert medical advice for our local area and, therefore, ask that your child continues to bring a face covering to school, until we are notified of a fall in COVID-19 infection rates. We will write to you again at that point to confirm that face coverings are no longer needed.
This means that from Monday, 17 May 2021 your child will no longer need to wear a face covering in lessons. However, if they wish to continue to wear a face covering in corridors and communal areas, then, of course, they may.
Please be aware that other control measures, including additional cleaning, hand washing/sanitising and year group ‘bubbles’ will remain in place in school in line with national and DfE guidance and in line with the school’s revised COVID risk assessment that can be found on our website.