The updated guidance is based on new scientific and public health advice and states that face coverings should now be worn:
- In secondary schools by pupils and adults when moving around the school, such as in corridors and communal areas where physical distancing is difficult to maintain
- On dedicated school transport for all children aged five and over, consistent with the current requirements applicable on public transport.
As per the existing guidance for schools, pupils and staff can continue to wear face coverings if they wish to, though these will generally not be required in the classroom given the greater scope of physical distancing and the impact coverings can have on learning and teaching.
Some children, young people and staff will be exempt from wearing a face covering for a number of reasons, including medical conditions, and we ask that everyone treats each other with kindness and respect on this issue.
From Monday, pupils and staff in secondary schools and all children aged five or over using dedicated school transport should wear their own face coverings. The Council will also supply additional face coverings to schools as a contingency measure in light of these changes. As this updated guidance is implemented, schools will consider wider equity issues.
Clear adviceSchools will also ensure children and young people are provided with clear advice on how to put on, remove and store face coverings ahead of the changes. These instructions include:
- Face coverings should not be shared with others
- Cleaning hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser before putting on or removing a face covering
- Ensuring the face covering is the right size to cover the nose, mouth and chin, and not to touch the front or pull it
- Placing a face covering in a washable, sealed bag or container when temporarily storing it, such as in a classroom. The stored face covering should be placed in the pupil’s bag and not on the desk
- Washing re-usable face coverings after each day of school at 60 degrees C. or in boiling water
- Disposing of single-use face coverings in a safe and hygienic manner in general waste bins.
Schools will use a range of resources to support this messaging, including new information and advice on the Young Scot website.
More information on face coverings can be found on the Scottish Government website.