5 February 2021

Return to school with mitigation measures

In response to the Welsh Government Education Minister’s announcement today that Foundation Phase children will begin returning to school during the week after half term, Dilwyn Roberts-Young, UCAC General Secretary said “The fact that Welsh Government has shared the latest scientific and medical evidence has helped to understand the basis of its decision to allow Foundation Phase children to return to face-to-face teaching. We welcome the announcement of mitigating measures to further reduce risks, including regular testing for staff and investment in equipment and modifications. 

“However, the genuine concerns of teachers in the Foundation Phase about this return must be acknowledged. We urge local authorities and schools to take the local context into account in making their plans, and encourage all concerned to consider a gradual, flexible return.

“We will continue to discuss the details with Welsh Government, local government and Further Education colleges over the next week, and we’ll support members as they get to grips with the challenging logistics in their schools and colleges. 

“We continue to call for the governments in Westminster and Wales to state when and how they intend to prioritise school staff for vaccination in order to ensure the continuity of our pupils’ education.”