Following yesterday’s statement (Thursday 30 July) by the Scottish Government, the Council can confirm that schools in East Dunbartonshire will fully reopen to pupils on Wednesday 12 August. As previously planned, teachers will also return on Monday 10 August for two in service days in final preparation for the new 2020/21 school year.
Joint Council Leader, Councillor Andrew Polson explained, “We are delighted to be able to confirm that our schools will fully reopen to pupils in just under two weeks from now.
Significant work by many of our Council teams has been continuing in recent weeks to make a pupil return on 12 August possible, and a range of measures are being implemented to ensure that our schools will be safe for both our pupils and school based workforce.
“All pupils will return to school on 12 August but there will be some phasing over the first week with some year groups attending for shorter periods each day. This will be organised in our secondary schools to ensure that the new arrangements can be put in place, particularly during lunch time.”
The Scottish Government guidance issued to councils says that physical distancing will not be enforced between pupils although secondary schools are being encouraged to make some additional adjustments, where possible, to encourage older children to keep apart. There will be physical distancing between adults and where possible, adults and children will be expected to maintain 2m distance.
Joint Council Leader, Councillor Vaughan Moody added, “Increased measures are being put in place to ensure our schools are clean, safe environments. Additional cleaning will be undertaken throughout the school day and we are recruiting over 70 additional day cleaners across the school estate in response to Covid-19.
“Clear and consistent signage has been developed to reinforce messaging on good hand hygiene, catching and binning sneezes and for one way systems where these are being implemented. There will also be signage advising anyone who may have symptoms not to enter our schools and reminders of key messages at the school gates for parents/carers, including physical distancing between non-family groups at drop off and pick up."
Significant work is also underway in relation to transport provision and information will be issued in relation to considering active transport when travelling to school to avoid congestion and large gatherings at the school gates and approaches to them.
Councillor Polson explained, “There are challenges at the approaches to a number of our schools and to address this some Temporary Traffic Restriction Orders are being put in place. These will be communicated through each school community and we would encourage parents and carers to consider walking to school for their children where this is possible and to always park responsibly in the school vicinity.”