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We understand parents and carers may have questions following the Scottish Government’s announcement that the remainder of children and young people will return to schools in West Dunbartonshire starting from 15 March.

We have compiled a list of frequently asked questions below, which we hope will help answer some of your queries.

If you have any additional questions that are not answered below, please don’t hesitate to contact your Head Teacher or Head of Centre who will be happy to help.

Questions relating to P4-P7 children

When is my school re-opening?

P4 – P7 primary school pupils will return to school full time on Monday 15 March.  

Please return all home learning materials, books and Chrome books including chargers to the school on Monday 15 March.

How will you ensure the safety of my child when at school?

The Council stringently follows the scientific evidence and advice from Public Health Scotland.

We are committed to the safety and wellbeing of all children and young people.

Regular hand washing will continue to be undertaken by all young children, children and staff.

While there is no requirement for children to physically distance in primary school, schools will continue to have staggered lunch and intervals, as well as start and finish times to reduce the number of children arriving and leaving the school at one time.

Parents and carers should wear a face covering and maintain 2 metre physical distancing when dropping off and picking up children. Parents and carers must not to congregate at entrances or exits.

Will staff or children need to wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

Children will not be required to wear PPE while in class or during breaks. All teachers and support staff must wear face coverings  where physical distancing is not possible.

My child uses school transport to and from school.  Will this change?

Every child entitled to receive school transport prior to the closure will continue to receive this.

Children travelling to school by public transport with their parent or carer (bus or taxi) Primary school children using school transport to and from school should wear a face covering.

Where possible, we would ask parents who are able to make their own arrangements to take and collect their children from school to do so.  We would also encourage any children, where it is safe to do so, to walk or cycle to and from school. 

How will the cleaning and hygiene of schools be managed?

Each primary school will have a cleaner on site during the day to undertake regular and enhanced cleaning of high priority areas and frequently touched surfaces.

Regular hand washing remains as the single most effective means of prevention. Children and young people will be reminded of the importance of good hand hygiene.

What happens if my child takes unwell at school?

If any child takes unwell  at school, they will be supported individually  in a well ventilated room until they can be safely collected. Any pupil testing positive would need to self-isolate at home for 10 days and follow the advice from the NHS at stay at home guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection.

What wellbeing supports will be available to children when they return?

All staff are committed to supporting the wellbeing of children and are working together to ensure that this is the main focus of planning  for their return. We recognise the impact of time out of school and COVID on their routines and lives and will take this into account when working with  and supporting them.

Psychological services can offer help and support if required and parents are encouraged to speak to their child’s school for further support if they have any concerns over the wellbeing of their child.    

My child has additional support needs (ASN). What support will there be for ASN children?

Your child will return to school on Monday 15 March and they will receive the transport that was in place prior to the schools closing in December.  All teachers will work with support staff to ensure the needs of individuals are met as part of their planning.  If your child has a healthcare plan, this will be reviewed and adapted as necessary to support their return.

If you have any questions related to your child, please contact your Head Teacher for further reassurance.

Will free school meals/clothing grants still be provided?

You may be eligible for free school meals and a school clothing grant if you receive benefits. For more information and to find out if you qualify visit the free school meals and clothing grants page.

All children in Primary School entitled to Free School Meals will have these provided from the 15th March.  Payments to parents will stop on Friday the 12th March. Paid school lunches will also be available from this time.

Questions relating to Secondary Schools

When will my child return to secondary school?

Young people in S1 to S3 will also return the week of Monday 15th  March.  This will be a blend  of in-school and remote learning.  Your child’s school will be in touch with you to provide individual arrangements, day, times etc for when your child should return to school.   

From March 15th until the Easter holidays, all young people will receive some face-to-face learning in school. 

As outlined in the Scottish Government directive, priority will be given to young people in S4 to S6 who are studying for National qualifications. 

All young people will return to full time in school learning after the Easter holidays on Monday, 19 April.

Please return all home learning materials, books  and Chromebooks, including chargers, to the school on Monday 19 April.

How will you ensure the safety of my child when at school?

The Council stringently follows the scientific evidence and advice from Public Health Scotland.

We are committed to the safety and wellbeing of all young people.

Regular hand washing will continue to be undertaken by all young people and staff.

Young people will must adhere to the physically distance measures in place for secondary schools.

Parents and carers must wear a face covering and  maintain 2 metre physical distancing when dropping off and picking up children.

Staff and senior pupils can take part in at home lateral flow testing twice per week. We would ask parents/carers to encourage and support their children with this. 

Covid safe schools

The Council is committed to the health and wellbeing of all children and to ensure the safety of children and young people and our employees.

To support our children, young people and staff in this, we have devised guidance and support for schools to ensure staff and pupil safety is at the heart of their planning. It is expected that our child and young people  co-operate with the COVID mitigation measures.

Secondary pupils must:

  • Wear a face covering throughout the day
  • 2m physical distancing between secondary-aged pupils, between pupils and staff, and between staff
  • Classrooms and corridors should be well ventilated.

Senior secondary pupils S4-S6 and staff in schools  will be given Lateral Flow Device (LFD) Home Testing Kits to test twice weekly from home.

Work is underway to issue home Lateral Flow tests to all secondary pupils to test twice weekly at home when pupils return to school after the Easter holiday on Monday, 19 April.

Who can I contact for support?

Your child’s head teacher and teachers are available to support you in your child’s learning and they can signpost you to services for further support if required.  Please do continue to ask for help. We would actively encourage parents/carers to contact school offices with enquiries to ensure we can swiftly arrange further support if required.

How will the cleaning and hygiene of schools be managed?

Secondary schools and our ASN provisions have been allocated an additional day cleaner.  The cleaning schedule focuses on identified priority areas and high frequency touch points.   

Regular hand washing remains as the single most effective means of prevention. Young people will be reminded of the importance of good hand hygiene. Hand sanitiser stations are in place with additional sinks installed where required.

Will school transport be provided?

Yes, young people who received school transport prior to the schools closing in December will be entitled to free transport to and from school from 15 March.

Young people at secondary school must maintain a 1metre physical distance and wear a face covering when on school transport.

Will free school meals/clothing grants still be provided?

You are eligible for free school meals and a school clothing grant if you receive benefits. For more information and to find out if you qualify visit the free school meals and clothing grants page.

Young people entitled to free school meals in S1-S6, attending on a blended model will continue to receive FME payments until Friday the 16th April.   When they attend school, they should be provided with lunch from home. Pupils will receive lunch in school from the 19th April and paid school lunches will also be available from this time in all of our Secondary Schools.

What wellbeing supports will be available to children and young people when they return?

All staff are committed to supporting the wellbeing of our young people.  Our plans for return will ensure time and opportunity to ‘check in’ on wellbeing and access supports as part of the transition back to school.  All of our High Schools have a range of interventions available which can support emotional wellbeing.  Pupils can access school counselling and are also able to access Togetherall, a free online confidential support service available to residents aged between 16-24. The service is completely anonymous.  Schools will remind pupils and parents how to access these.

Psychological services can offer help and support if required and parents are encouraged to speak to their child’s school for further support if they have any concerns over the wellbeing of their child.