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Return to school for Foundation Phase learners

Published: 18/02/2021

With the ongoing reduction in the number of new cases of Covid-19 Flintshire County Council has confirmed today that all of its primary schools will reopen as planned from Monday 22nd February and start to phase in Foundation Phase learners until all have returned by Friday 26th February. The average incidence rate between the end of October and the end November, when all pupils were in schools and fewer restrictions were in place was 217.5 per hundred thousand. The figures this week demonstrate a rate that is now nearly half of that with the added protection that all Level 4 national restrictions will remain in place during the period of the phased return.

Individual schools have confirmed their local opening arrangements to parents. All transport and catering services will be fully available to support the return to school. Families entitled to free school meals will receive their payment for the week of 22nd February to cover days when their Foundation Phase children may not have fully returned. However, NEWydd Catering services will be providing a full meal service to all pupils including those entitled to free school meals so there is no need for these families to provide their children with packed lunch during that week.

Claire Homard, Chief Officer Education and Youth said;

“The Council is confident that the robust risk assessments and covid-secure measures in place within its schools make them safe places for children and staff to return to. Schools are very experienced in managing the safe delivery of face to face learning and are keen to welcome their Foundation Phase pupils back, acknowledging the impact that long periods of absence from direct teaching and from their friends is now posing a greater risk to their long term academic progress and their emotional well-being than the potential impact of the virus.”

Cllr. Ian Roberts, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Education said;

“The Council is very grateful for all the hard work undertaken by its schools to prepare for the return of learners next week. It would also like to remind parents and carers that continuing to comply with lockdown restrictions when schools reopen is an essential part of the arrangements for the safe return of pupils and that following guidance on social distancing and the wearing of face coverings at school drop off and collection points should be strictly followed.”