Somerset County Council now requires all secondary age pupils to wear face coverings on dedicated school transport with immediate effect, unless they are exempt.
Pupils are already required to wear face coverings in communal areas in secondary schools and this approach is being extended to all vehicles operating home to school transport.
These measures are to help combat the spread of COVID-19 in our schools and communities. Until now the wearing of face coverings on home to school transport has been left to the discretion of parents – with immediate effect any pupil of secondary school age who is not wearing a face covering when boarding the school transport will be asked to put one on.
If they do not have a face covering with them, they will be offered one by the driver.
Failure to comply with a request to wear a face covering will be reported to the pupil’s school who will the address the matter through the appropriate disciplinary procedures.
“It is vital that we take all appropriate measures to minimize the spread of COVID-19,” said Cllr Faye Purbrick.
“Our priority is to make school transport as safe as possible and wearing a face covering on the journey is an important part of that, reducing the potential spread of the virus to children, drivers, school staff and family members” she added.
“We know some children and young people are exempt from wear coverings and that will not change. But the vast majority of pupils are not, and just as they are required to wear face coverings in school communal areas, they must now do so on their school transport.”
You can find the latest Government guidance on face coverings here. And there’s a helpful video explaining how to use face coverings properly here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Tv2BVN_WTk A single phone number is available for anyone in Somerset who needs Coronavirus-related support from their councils.
The Somerset Coronavirus Support Helpline number, 0300 790 6275, is open seven days a week from 8am to 6pm, offering a range of support – from help accessing food or medicines, to emotional and financial support, and employment, skills and business advice.
Submitted by Communications