Perins School received the following information on 11th June from the Home to School Transport Team at Hampshire County Council:
Guidance regarding use of face coverings on HtST.
The existing guidance on this subject provided by the home to school transport service is replicated below. There has been no published guidance from the Department for Education or from the Department for Transport that requires a change in the position that has been adopted by the County Council. We are closely monitoring official advice and should it be necessary we will contact schools and operators to share any changes.
The Government has recently provided new Guidance to passengers using public transport. The Department for Transport’s published information includes the following paragraph. “Social distancing and hand washing remain by far the most important disease prevention measures but it is also vital all passengers travelling on buses, coaches, trains, trams, ferries and aircraft should wear a face covering and the government will also work with operators to ensure staff are provided with, and wear face coverings, where appropriate for their role.”
Public transport and contracted home to school transport are not the same. The children and young people on local authority funded transport are known to the Council and the operator.
The County Council’s advice is:
1. drivers should wear a face covering. Transport escorts on transport at this time have been provided with a face covering; some schools have asked that both drivers and escorts wears face coverings. I hope that you will all be able to meet with this request.
2. children on transport cannot be required to wear a face covering. Younger children and those with special needs may not be able to safely wear a face covering. Secondary age children and their parents may wish to make use of a face covering, there is published advice that applies to using public transport that they can use if they wish to, https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-travel-guidance-for-passengers