The Education Minister Kirsty Williams has confirmed that Foundation Phase primary children can return to school for face-to-face learning after February half-term. Coronavirus cases are continuing to fall across Wales which allows us to start planning for the return to school in a phased and flexible way, starting after February 22 with children in Reception, Y1 and Y2. Nursery pupils will return at a later date, when it is safe and less confusing to do so.
Please be assured that the safety of both pupils and staff is our main priority, and we will be reviewing the health and safety measures we have in place and any additional measures that may be needed.
It will take some time before all pupils return to school for face-to-face learning and as a result, schools will continue to make on-site provision available for vulnerable children and children of critical workers after the half-term break. KS2 pupils will continue their learning online and those KS2 pupils who currently have places in the hub will remain in the hub. Foundation phase pupils who are currently in the hub will return to their normal classes on the days that they are booked in the hub.
It is extremely important that we all continue to follow the guidance around hand-washing, social distancing and face coverings. Please remind your children and please continue to wear face coverings when dropping off and collecting your children, and please do not gather at the school gates and keep your distance from others – we cannot reiterate how important this is to reduce transmission within our communities.
It is also important to remember that a return to school is not a return to normal life, and children should not be mixing outside of the classroom environment. Please do not visit others houses, arrange sleepovers or parties. Anything where groups of adults and children are mixing. Schools will be kept under constant review taking into consideration the latest number of cases, the R number and the number of patients in hospital. An increase in transmission rates could result in schools closing again.
Please remember if you or your child or anyone else living in your household has any of the Covid-19 symptoms, you must immediately self-isolate and get tested. It is also important that you inform your school if your child tests positive. For all the latest information on schools including a comprehensive list of FAQs please visit our website carmarthenshire.gov.wales/education .
We would like to thank you once again for your all your co-operation and support during this time. We will be in touch later this week with the organisation of how the return to school for Reception, Y1 and Y2 pupils will be organised.