Return to school on 29 June
Flintshire County Council has announced that the school term will end on Friday 17 July.
This is because Welsh Government and the trade unions have not been able to reach a common position on the proposal to extend the summer term by one week to 24 July, as previously announced by the Education Minister Kirsty Williams. We would have hoped to have seen these issues resolved but in the absence of a national agreement, the Council has had to make a decision to be able to give schools sufficient time to plan properly. There would be no guarantee that schools would have sufficient staff available to deliver the fourth week safely on voluntary basis as staff are not contractually obliged to work in the holidays. The Council has a duty to ensure the safety of its pupils and staff first and foremost. This decision is fully supported by the Flintshire Headteacher Federations.
Councillor Ian Roberts, Leader and Cabinet Member for Education and Youth, said:
“Whilst the Council was totally supportive of the announcement to extend the school term, it became clear, with no national agreement between the Welsh Government and the trade unions, we could not ensure that schools would be staffed sufficiently. The safety of our pupils and staff is paramount.”
The local authority is keen to work with schools and parents/carers to ensure all pupils benefit from an opportunity to check in with their schools, catch up with their peers and teachers, and prepare for the next school year.
From Monday 29 June, Flintshire schools will start to accept their own pupils to attend identified sessions.
As a result of the legislation around maintaining social distancing of 2 metres and to ensure the health and safety of all learners and staff, schools will not be operating full time provision for all pupils during this three week period and neither will this be a return to the teaching of the full curriculum. Not all pupils will return at once and, when they do return, the school day might start and end at different times for different learners. This may include different arrangements for siblings of different ages, attending the same school. Schools have been communicating their own arrangements to parents and are ready to welcome their learners back.