Friday 7th August 2020
Letter from Fiona Robertson, Executive Director Children, Young People & Partnerships, Midlothian Council
This guidance is designed to support a safe return to school for all children and young people taking full account of progress made in suppressing COVID-19 in Scotland, the scientific advice received and the advice of the National Education Recovery Group and other key stakeholders.
Midlothian Council will continue to deliver Home to School transport as per the current Education Policy rule of 2 Miles for all pupils attending their catchment school. The Transport Plan in place pre-covid19 lockdown will be re-established with limited changes as per the scientific advice received and the advice of the National Education Recovery Group.
Dedicated School Transport
Dedicated school transport should be treated as an extension of the school estate. Enhanced cleaning of dedicated school transport vehicles will be important, especially where vehicles are used for other purposes before and after transporting children to and from school. Personal hand and respiratory hygiene is important, including sanitisation of hands prior to boarding.
Distancing between children and young people on dedicated school transport is not required, although where possible some practical approaches to grouping and distancing are provided. Pupils will fill the bus rear to front as per their boarding.
Midlothian Council strongly recommend face coverings on all school transport to provide a consistent message in line with national guidance for public transport and to minimise any confusion. The exemption rules for face coverings are the same as public transport and an exemption card can be found at https://disabilityequality.scot/face-covering/
Non Entitled seats will not be offered on any dedicated school routes at present during the covid19 pandemic. The situation will be reviewed every 3 months.
Face coverings on public transport must be worn. It remains the responsibility of parent/carers to ensure that their child follows national guidance when using public transport.
Dedicated and Public Transport
Midlothian Council seeks your support with the hygiene practice expected to prevent transmission. Therefore, we are asking that on your child’s first journey back to school that your child has washed or sanitised their hands in line with public health guidance. To support children and young people to continue with good respiratory hygiene practice we will provide your child with a washable face mask on their first day back in school. Any family that is concerned about not having a face covering for their child’s first journey to school should contact their school directly.
Passes and Letters
Midlothian is producing letters and passes for all routes and letters detailing the transport for each pupil will be sent out this week. Passes will, as normal, be distributed from the schools. Parents should contact the Operator for information on route pick up and times. The impact on Transport has meant we may have made changes from the previous times and locations.
Executive Director Children, Young People & Partnerships
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