• Steve Stuart

Blog post: Transport Guidance - updated 27/07/2020

Amongst all the guidance relating to supporting the roadmap to recovery in the midst of the pandemic there is always the question of what is of immediate relevance to Children's Services Departments.




Some parts are quite clear, the increased numbers of children to attend school from 1st June is pretty clear. But children and young people are also part of wider society. And schools are more than their pupils.


The re-expansion of school's provision therefore links to a number of wider pieces of guidance which we may not automatically include in our aggregate of guidance and updates.





On Monday (11/5) the Department of Transport issued guidance that will have mainly been presented and designed with commuters and those seeking to return to work following the easing of some lockdown measures.


However, these pieces of guidance for transport operators and for passengers will be of interest and relevance to those who support our schools and educational establishments for the overarching principles in terms of supporting pupils and staff to attend and return home again safely and conduction appropriate risk assessments.


Update: On Thursday (14/5) the DfE issued new guidance entitled "Safe working in education, childcare and children’s social care settings, including the use of personal protective equipment (PPE)". It included the following question:


What protection is needed when transporting children?


If the children or young people being transported do not have symptoms of coronavirus, there is no need for a driver to use PPE.


In non-residential settings, any child, young person or other learner who starts displaying coronavirus symptoms while at their setting should wherever possible be collected by a member of their family or household. In exceptional circumstances, where this is not possible, and the setting needs to take responsibility for transporting them home, or where a symptomatic child or young person needs to be transported between residential settings, you should do one of the following:


  • use a vehicle with a bulkhead

  • the driver and passenger should maintain a distance of 2 metres from each other

  • the driver should use PPE, and the passenger should wear a face mask if they are old enough and able to do so

Similarly the Guidance entitled "Closure of Educational Settings - information for Parents and carers" has a section on transport in realtion to the wider reopening of schools. Link


Question 5.4 is


"What precautions should my child take when travelling to school?"


From 1 June, children in reception, year 1 and year 6 will be able to attend school, in addition to the children of critical workers and vulnerable children who were already attending school.

From 15 June, children in year 10 and 12, and 16 to 19 learners in the first year of their course, will be provided with some face-to-face contact and only a quarter of them will attend at any one time.

This should limit the amount of children travelling to and from school/college to manageable numbers.

When planning your journey to school, particularly if using public transport, you should follow the safer travel guidance for passengers.

Pupils and parents should do all they can to help make sure they and others can travel safely. This can be done through:

  • not leaving home if anyone in their household, has symptoms of coronavirus

  • avoiding travelling on public transport, particularly at peak times

  • maintaining a 2 metre distance from others who are not in their household

  • ensuring good respiratory hygiene by using the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach

  • avoiding touching their face

  • washing their hands thoroughly before and after travelling

  • wearing a face covering if they need to use public transport

When deciding whether children wear a face covering on school transport, it is also important to remember:

  • school transport is unlike public transport, in that it generally carries the same group of children to and from the same destination each day – this may help reduce the risk of cross infection

  • children and staff won’t be expected to wear face coverings in school

  • it is important that those using face coverings are able to do so properly – guidance on how to wear and make a cloth face covering is available

  • face coverings should not be used by children under the age of 3 or those who may find it difficult to manage them correctly


Links:


Coronavirus (COVID-19): safer travel guidance for passengers


- updated 25/07/2020 with new rules relating to wearing face coverings in transport hubs

- updated 17/07/2020 to detail latest advice on using transport and information on upcoming changes to face covering rules in shops and supermarkets

- updated 04/07/2020 to detail information on travelling into and out of areas under local lockdown arrangements.

- updated 03/07/2020 to detail countries on travel corridors exemption

- updated 29/06/2020 with updated social distancing guidance

- updated 14/06/2020 to detail that passengers on public transport need to wear face coverings

- updated 28/05/2020 to detail how those with symptoms may arrange a test for COVID-19

- updated 23/05/2020 to detail that you may be asked to remove your facemask for identity purposes.


Coronavirus (COVID-19): safer transport guidance for operators


- updated 25/07/2020 with new rules relating to wearing face coverings in transport hubs

- updated 17/07/2020 to detail latest advice on communications and information on upcoming changes to face covering rules in shops and supermarkets

- updated 04/07/2020 to detail information on travelling into and out of areas under local lockdown arrangements.

- updated 03/07/2020 to detail countries on travel corridors exemption

- updated 29/06/2020 with updated social distancing guidance

- updated 14/06/2020 to reflect the upcoming requirement for passengers to wear face coverings on public transport in England.

- updated 28/05/2020 to detail how those with symptoms may arrange a test for COVID-19



Update history

  1. First published 14/05/20

  2. This article was updated at 20:04 on 14/5/20 to include guidance included in "Safe working in education, childcare and children’s social care settings, including the use of personal protective equipment (PPE)"

  3. This article was updated at 01:35 on 26/05/20 to details the update to the safety advice to passengers.

  4. This article was updated at 20:05 on 28/05/20 with details how those with symptoms canarrange a test for COVID-19

  5. This article was updated at 20:18 on 14/06/20 with details on wearing face coverings on public transport.

  6. This article was updated at 01:18 on 15/06/20 with information on schools transport from question 5.4 on information for parents and carers on the closure of educational settings.

  7. This article was updated at 12:58 on 07/07/20 with updates on gov.uk webpages since last update.

  8. This article was updated on 20/07/20 with updates on gov.uk webpages since last update

  9. This article was updated at 1:41 27/07/20 with updates on gov.uk webpages since last update. The listing of updates was also rearranged so that the most recent updates were listed first.

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