Children, schools and education settings

Last updated: Friday 23 October 2020

Schools, colleges and early years settings

Autumn term 2020

In line with Government guidance, all schools in Bury fully re-opened to all pupils at the beginning of the Autumn Term and they have settled well into their routines.

The Local Authority continues to work closely with School Leaders and Health colleagues, following national guidance from Government and Public Health England.

All Bury schools completed risk assessments in advance of the new academic year which were quality assured by the Council's Health and Safety Team. The revised policies and procedures introduced by schools continue to be under review to ensure that the school environment complies with the latest government guidance.

Schools will continue to work with families to secure full attendance from the start of the new academic year, with the reintroduction of mandatory attendance. Returning to school is vital for children's education and for their wellbeing. Time out of school is detrimental for children's cognitive and academic development, and this impact can affect both current levels of learning and children's future ability to learn.

You will be aware that the number of people testing positive for coronavirus in Bury is a concern and that we remain an area of intervention for the government. On Friday 25 September, Bury reported 193 positive cases per 100,000 placing us third highest in Greater Manchester and well above the England average of 57. Due to the figures Bury, along with the rest of Greater Manchester and a number of other areas in England, is currently subject to additional restrictions.

As we see the number of positive cases in our schools increase we ask that you abide by the latest guidelines. We share a duty of care to each other as our school staff continue to work to educate and care for your child/ren during the school day.

If your school has informed you that there has been a positive case in school and your child is a close contact of the case then your child must self-isolate for 14 days. This means that they must not leave home. If they develop any of the three main symptoms of COVID-19 then you should arrange for them to be tested and inform school of the outcome. If your child is symptom free then they can return to school after the isolation period. Please see the guide below for further information.

pdf icon COVID-19 absence: A quick guide for parents and carers (English) [269kb]

For translated versions of the COVID-19 absence guide see 'Downloads' at the end of this page.

Government guidance

The government has provided information for parents and carers about early years providers, schools and colleges during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Face coverings in education

The Department for Education has issued guidance on the use of face coverings for schools and other education institutions that teach people in Years 7 and above in England.

Travel to school and college

Transport for Greater Manchester have issued information and safe travel advice for returning to school and college.

Further guidance

The government has provided guidance for parents and carers of children attending community activities, holiday or after-school clubs, tuition and other out-of-school settings.

This guidance covers changes to after-school clubs, holiday clubs, tuition, community activities and other out-of-school settings for children and young people over the age of 5 during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Department for Education Coronavirus helpline

There is a helpline to answer questions about Coronavirus (COVID-19) related to education. Staff, parents and young people can contact the helpline as follows.

Phone: 0800 046 8687,

Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday).

Advice and resources from The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health

Whilst coronavirus is infectious to children it is rarely serious. If your child is unwell it is likely to be a non-coronavirus illness, rather than coronavirus itself.

Whilst it is extremely important to follow Government advice to stay at home during this period, it can be confusing to know what to do when your child is unwell or injured. Remember that NHS 111, GPs and hospitals are still providing the same safe care that they have always done. 

What to do if you child is unwell or injured

This downloadable poster provides some helpful advice:

More advice and resources for parents and carers during the coronavirus outbreak are available at The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health website. 

Coronavirus fact sheet and animation for children

The coronavirus fact sheet and animation is for children to help them understand what Coronavirus is, the importance of hand washing and how to help stop the virus spreading. These were developed by the Alder Hey Children's NHS Foundation Trust. A downloadable fact sheet is also available at the end of this page.  They have also made an animation to go with it.

View the animation

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Download the factsheet

Government guidance on supporting children and young people's mental health and wellbeing

Advice for parents and carers on looking after the mental health and wellbeing of children or young people during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Go to for advice on support children and young people's mental health and wellbeing