Dedicated home to school transport and coronavirus

The School & College Transport team will continue to follow all guidance issued by Government, Department for Education (DfE) and Public Health England (PHE).

All transport routes are operating however, there may be occasions where it is not possible to run some vehicles due to staff absences in relation to coronavirus.

From the Autumn Term (September 2021) the local authority is not required to keep Children & Young People within their bubbles.

Although restrictions have been lifted home to school transport will continue to implement:

  • Enhanced cleaning of all vehicles with particular attention to high touch points (grab rails, seat belts etc). Some contractors have also purchased an 'ozone machine' to sanitise the vehicle and remove traces of bacteria.

  • All vehicles will operate with open windows or roof lights to allow free flow of air through the passenger compartment of the vehicle

  • Wherever possible vehicles are to be filled on 'first in, last out' basis with pupils getting on first seated at the rear of the vehicle and the bus filling forwards.

  • All passengers are to be seated in forward facing seats with no face-to-face seating

  • Use of face coverings is recommended by the Department for Education (DfE) for pupils over the age of 11 unless they are medically exempt. Due to the varying needs of the pupils a large proportion of the children/young people we transport cannot tolerate wearing face covering. Where a pupil is able to wear one, we will encourage use however, it will not be mandatory, and transport will not be refused.

  • Personal Protective Equipment is not required for home to school transport.

  • All pupil escorts must wear a face covering/mask (unless medically exempt). Pupil escorts have been issued with 3 reusable/washable face coverings. 

  • All pupil escorts have been issued with hand sanitiser, sanitising wipes and tissues.

  • Any pupil escorts, drivers or children displaying symptoms of covid-19 must not report for work / access transport.

  • Any pupil escorts or drivers awaiting a PCR test result must not report for work.

  • Schools will continue to practice regular and cleaning

From 16 August 2021

Drivers and pupil escorts that are identified as a close contact of somebody who has covid-19 will not be required to self-isolate if they are:

  • Fully vaccinated (vaccinated with an approved MHRA covid-19 vaccine in the UK and at least 14 days have elapsed since you received the recommended doses of that vaccine

Or

  • Aged under 18 years and 6 months

From 14 December 2021

Drivers and pupil escorts who are fully vaccinated identified as a contact by Test and Trace of someone with Covid-19 are advised to take an NHS rapid lateral flow test every day for 7 days and continue to attend work as normal.

Daily testing of close contacts applies to all contacts who are:

  • Fully vaccinated adults (had 2 doses of an approved vaccine)

  • People who are not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons

  • People who are taking part, or have taken part, in an approved clinical trial for a Covid-19 vaccine.

A specific pdf icon Covid 19 Risk Assessment [192kb] is in place for dedicated home to school transport and will remain under constant review.

Parent responsibilities

If your child receives a positive test result for covid-19, or develops symptoms of covid-19 (new continuous cough, high temperature, loss of taste and/or smell or any other symptoms of coronavirus) they must not access home to school transport. 

If your child develops symptoms during the school day you will be expected to make arrangements to collect them from school. They will not be permitted to travel home on transport.

Any children & young people displaying symptoms will be expected to follow government guidance for households with possible or confirmed Covid-19 infection. Current guidance states anyone with Covid-19 symptoms or a positive test result should stay at home, self-isolate immediately and arrange a PCR test.

All children & young people should:

  • Wash / sanitise their hands before and after each journey for at least 20 seconds.

  • If possible, wear a face covering if they are over 11 years of age and not medically exempt. This is a recommendation by the Department of Education (DfE).

  • If your child is able to wear a face covering they will require two face coverings per day; one for the journey to school and one for the return journey.

  • Remain seated and facing forward at all times.

  • Avoid touching surfaces unless necessary

  • Fill the rear seats of the vehicle first and exit from the front wherever possible

  • Not eat or drink on the vehicle

From 16 August 2021

Any children or young people under the age of 18 are no longer required to self-isolate if contacted by test & trace and identified as a close contact of a positive covid-19 case. Instead, children & young people will be contacted by NHS test & trace and informed that they have been in close contact with a positive case and advised to take a PCR test.

From 14 December 2021

All children and young people aged between 5 years and 18 years and 6 months identified as a contact by Test and Trace of someone with Covid-19 are advised to take an NHS rapid lateral flow test every day for 7 days and continue to attend work as normal.

Children under 5 years of age are exempt from self-isolation and do not need to take part in daily testing of close contacts.