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  3. Next steps for the phased, wider opening of schools

Next steps for the phased, wider opening of schools

12 May 2020 (by admin)

You will have undoubtedly seen that the Department for Education has now published a suite of guidance documents for the phased, wider opening of schools.

The first thing to say is that the 1st June deadline is the earliest date for wider opening - and it marks the beginning of a cautious, planned approach to opening school’s more widely.

It is clear that some schools will now begin to plan for the possibility that they may need to accommodate additional pupils in a phased return from June 1st, or later depending on future government guidance.

In the event that some schools do start to receive more pupils from June onwards, we will be giving consideration to whether trainee teachers could and should return to schools during the Summer Term.

There however, remains much uncertainty over the timing, practicalities and logistics of the phased return and we are acutely aware of the additional burden this will be placing on our members as you work towards making the best decisions to support our trainees and our partner schools.

Kingsbridge take the view that trainees should only go into schools if:

  • this is on the basis of a voluntary agreement between the trainee and the school and is not considered a requirement of the training provider;
  • all parties (provider, trainee and school) are in agreement and the provider has clear agreements with the trainee about any online or distance learning that they must be available to engage with and that any voluntary attendance in school should accommodate this;
  • no individual trainee will be expected to go into school if they are unable or unwilling to do so, and that they will not be disadvantaged if they do choose not to go in;
  • trainees who do attend school will be engaged in meaningful experiences;
  • the health and safety of trainees and provider/school staff is protected following the most up to date guidance available from government; and
  • trainees who are unable to volunteer in a school are not unduly disadvantaged in comparison to those that can.

This advice is subject to any future decisions or guidance from HM Government and the DfE.