Coronavirus (Covid-19): service updates, support and health advice.

Online planning, building control and licensing services will be unavailable between 2pm and 3.30pm on Saturday 29 January. This is because of essential maintenance.

Arrangements and updates will be sent to you by your school, college, early years setting or childcare provider. Contact them directly if you have any questions.

Keeping children safe

There are practical measures in place for children in early years settings, schools and college.

These include:

  • lateral flow testing for staff, secondary school and college pupils
  • regularly updating risk assessments
  • following the latest public health guidance on bubbles for groups of children and staff (schools and colleges no longer have to organise children into smaller bubbles during the school day, although some may continue to do this)
  • reminding children and young people to regularly wash their hands and use a tissue to sneeze into
  • planning for your child to arrive and leave school safely (your provider, school or college will contact you directly with the details)
  • using one-way systems, floor markings or instructions on how to move around the building (for some schools and colleges)
  • ventilation of classrooms and maximising the use of outdoor spaces for learning and play
  • having an outbreak management plan (for when cases rise in their setting or in the local area)

Anyone with Covid-19 symptoms or a positive rapid lateral flow test must isolate and get a PCR test on GOV.UK or call 119. You can stop self-isolating after 5 full days if you get 2 negative lateral flow test results on day 5 and 6

For information about isolating if you are a close contact (with someone who has tested positive) go to our testing and self-isolating page.

Primary school children do not need to test regularly.

There will be individual risk assessments for children who may not be able to take a rapid lateral flow test.

Each school will have their own safety measures and guidance.

Vaccination for children and young people

For information on the Covid-19 vaccination for children and young people aged 12 to 17, visit our vaccination page.

Remote education or home learning

Schools will only move to remote education and learning where:

  • they have had to put in place exceptional measures due to high numbers of Covid-19 cases
  • a child or young person is isolating as they have tested positive for Covid-19

Moving to remote education for a class, year group or school is a last resort and the school will make this decision with the council.

If your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) then the school will discuss remote learning with you as this will need to be co-produced.

Free school meals

We are continuing to make sure children who are entitled to free school meals are getting them.

Schools will have their own processes in place for this to make sure that your child gets a meal if they are at home.

Contact your school if you have any questions about free school meals in term time or during the school holidays.

You can read more about free school meals in the government guidance: Providing school meals during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

For details of further financial support available visit our financial support for residents page.

Benefits of applying for free school meals

Applying for free school meals can bring other benefits to your child’s health, wellbeing and learning.

We are currently offering holiday activities and food clubs for children aged 5 to 16 years who live in South Gloucestershire. Funded by the Department for Education (DfE).

You can find out more on our supporting families in school holidays page.

Support available to you and your family

Buying uniform, lunch boxes, and other kit for your child’s return to school can be costly.

If your income or outgoings have been impacted by Covid-19 and you need some extra financial support to help, you can apply for our resilience fund.

You may also be eligible for a £500 payment if you are not exempt and have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

Find out more on our community resilience fund page.

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