If there is a local lockdown in an area with a significant number of infections, schools may need to set up a rotation system for students who spend two weeks in class and then fifteen days studying online at home. .
The phased approach would aim to reduce one person’s contact, helping to limit the spread of the coronavirus and give enough time at home for symptoms to appear.
The Ministry of Education guidelines do not apply to primary school children, as scientific evidence indicates that they “play a limited role in transmission.”
The guidelines say schools should base their plans on a four-tier system in order to respond to changing levels of coronavirus cases, and the approach favors keeping primary schools open.
Level 1 will be the default setting where all students attend school full time.
And the additional measures should be introduced at the second level if health and education officials believe infection levels are too high.
In this case, high school students would move on to a part-time internship, where they would study at school for fifteen days, then study online at home for two weeks.
Level 1 – Requires grade 7 and up students and staff to wear headgear in hallways and common areas.
Level 2 – Primary and preschool schools will remain open, while secondary schools will move to a rotating system, combining face-to-face and distance learning.
Level 3 – Primary and primary schools will remain open, but secondary schools and continuing education institutes will move to full distance learning, with the exception of key child laborers.
Level 4 – All early grades, primary and secondary will transition to full distance learning, except for key child laborers.
Teachers criticized the announcement and its timing.
Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, told Sky News: “I think there will be a tired sense of inevitability about this, which we have been saying for weeks and weeks what is the plan. B?
“What do we do after we open our schools and colleges, and welcome the kids, if there were to be a local lockdown?
“And the government responded that it was a crass act of heresy, even to question that.
“So here we are, just at the end of this whole planning process, one holiday weekend, the kids start coming back on Tuesday, and late last night the advice suddenly comes in with some confusion as to what exactly that entails.
“Sure, we’ll answer them and make sure we do the planning that is necessary, but we could have done that weeks and weeks and weeks ago. “
Meanwhile, Labor shadow education secretary Kate Green said the timing was “begging for belief.”
She added: “The incompetence of the government is insulting to the principals and teachers who have worked so hard during the summer to prepare schools for the return of children. ”
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said any change in school attendance “will never be more than an absolute last resort.”
But he added, “However, it is important that government and schools prepare for the worst-case scenario, so this framework represents reasonable contingency planning that any responsible government would put in place. ”
The guidelines also stated: “In all areas of intervention of the national government, in schools where pupils of seventh grade and above are educated, adults and pupils must wear face masks when moving around the premises, outside of classrooms, such as in hallways and common areas where social distancing cannot be easily maintained. ”
Official government data released on Friday revealed that the UK had recorded 1,276 daily confirmed cases of COVID-19, up from 1,522 a day earlier.
Thursday’s total was the highest daily number since June 12.
Nine other people have also died from coronavirus.