Schools: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 25th June 2020.

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Photo of Alex Sobel Alex Sobel Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what guidance his Department has issued to schools and teachers on dealing with children refusing to abide by two metre social distancing requirements.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

It is important for schools to be calm and disciplined environments, where everyone follows the rules. As outlined in the guidance published on 11 May, schools should update their behaviour policy to reflect the guidance on protective measures, including any new rules and routines. It should also include appropriate consequences (such as sanctions and rewards), so that teachers can ensure pupils understand the rules and can enforce them rigorously. The disciplinary powers that schools currently have, including exclusion, remain in place. Teachers will be aware that current circumstances may affect the emotional wellbeing of some pupils in ways that affect behaviour, and schools will need to ensure a proportionate response to situations that may arise. The guidance published on 11 May is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/preparing-for-the-wider-opening-of-schools-from-1-june/planning-guide-for-primary-schools.

Some children, including those with special educational needs and disabilities, may need extra support to ensure new norms and routines around protective measures and personal hygiene are clearly understood.

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