Everyone has been working very hard to ensure a safe reopening of schools for staff, students and their families.

Most students will be looking forward to going back to school and will feel happy and excited. Some may feel a little anxious about returning. That’s a normal response at a time of change. Most will settle back in soon once they get used to the new rules and routines.

Remind them of the positive aspects of returning – like re-connecting with friends and re-engaging with school activities.

New rules and routines to follow to keep everyone safe:

  • Good handwashing and hygiene practice – important for all students. Make sure your child knows to use a tissue to cover coughs or sneezes or to cough or sneeze into their elbow.
  • In senior primary classes and at post-primary – physical distancing procedures will need to be followed by all.
  • Primary school – younger children may not be required to practice physical distancing, but they may be organised into pods. There may also be new rules about drop off and pick up.
  • Staff in all schools, and post-primary students, should wear a face covering where a physical distance of 2 metres cannot be maintained.
  • Encourage your child to walk or cycle
  • School transport – students will have an assigned seat and post-primary students will be required to wear a face covering when waiting for and when on-board the bus.
  • Schools will communicate directly with families about reopening. Talk together at home about what to expect when going back to school
  • Having healthy routines in place will help with the adjustment of returning to school. Encourage your child to gradually return to a school term bedtime routine.
  • Help your child to eat healthily, take exercise and reconnect with friends.
  • Students who have COVID-19 symptoms, including a fever, a cough, shortness of breath or breathing difficulties, or loss or change to their sense of smell or taste should not attend school. Please follow guidance on HSE.ie on self-isolation and phone your doctor. Make sure students know that if they feel unwell in school they should tell their teacher straight away.
  • Teachers understand that it hasn’t been easy for young people to study at home during school closures.

Remember, we all have a role to play in getting everyone back to school safely. For more see gov.ie/backtoschool.

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