Classroom bubbles will no longer be in place and extra-curricular activities, including on-island trips between schools, can go ahead.
‘The start of term has been successful in terms of our core priority of minimising disruption to young people’s education, but we’re happy that the positive signs seen across the community with case numbers falling means these relaxations can come into effect,’ said director of Education Nick Hynes.
Some mitigations will however remain in place.
All staff, secondary school and post-16 students will be required to take daily lateral flow tests before attending school settings, while primary students will be asked to take a test on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
As an additional measure, face coverings will be expected to be worn in classrooms and teaching spaces for secondary and post-16 students, who along with staff, the mandatory requirement of face coverings in communal spaces remains in place.
‘[The measures] were designed to get us through the first couple of weeks of term and the current signs are positive, which is why we’ve taken the decision to try and move back to what we hope and think will feel like a more normal educational experience.
‘Removing the classroom bubbles is key to that, but as ever we need to ensure that appropriate measures are in place which is why we’re enhancing the current position around face coverings in class within a secondary or post-16 environment and asking everyone to support an enhanced lateral flow testing regime,’ said Mr Hynes.
The changes to school restrictions come just two weeks after additional measures were put in place at the start of the term.
‘I would like to thank all those involved in the delivery of education – staff, students, parents and carers – for helping us with the package of measures we put in place for the new term. They were designed to get us through the first couple of weeks of term and the current signs are positive, which is why we’ve taken the decision to try and move back to what we hope and think will feel like a more normal educational experience.’