'Tiered Covid action an almighty headache for schools'

Headteacher Rod Grant lays out the practical difficulties for schools of differing Covid restrictions

Rod Grant

'Tiered Covid action an almighty headache for schools'

Right everyone – let’s get this straight. Our school is in Edinburgh, so we are in tier 3.

We have members of staff travelling from areas in tier 2, so that’s easy, and we have members of staff who live in a tier 3 area, travel through a tier 4 area and arrive at school in tier 3 – that’s OK, too. We have members of staff travelling from restricted areas in tier 4 but that is perfectly acceptable because these journeys are essential, as are those of all key workers.

Pupils who live in tier 2 areas may have to travel through a tier 4 area to get to the school in tier 3. However, it is unlikely that they will stop on their way to and from school, so again, no issues.


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Some pupils, of course, live in tier 3 and there will be no such issues even if they have to travel through a tier 4 area on their way to school.

Pupils who live in tier 4 areas can still come to school (mostly with their parents by car) as all schools remain open so there are no travel restrictions for them as these are essential journeys. Hopefully, parents who live in tier 4 will return to their homes and none of them will stop on the way to buy non-essential items in shops that are open in tier 3 that they can’t access in their home region in tier 4.

Teachers and other school staff will then teach and look after pupils from tiers 2, 3 and 4 all day. At the end of the day, staff will return to their homes in tiers 2, 3 and 4. Those who live in tier 4 will not stop to purchase goods in tiers 2 and 3 on the way home.

Parents from tiers 2, 3 and 4 will pick their children up from school (in tier 3) and return to their homes in tiers 2, 3 and 4 with the same restrictions as staff members (in tier 4) outlined above.

External contractors and delivery drivers will, of course, be allowed to bring goods to the school regardless of which tier their business is in and can also travel through any number of tiers to get to the school.

Police have been given the power to stop you on your journey to and from school, but just tell them it’s OK, it’s an essential journey. If you need a letter from school to prove your innocence, just ask and we will provide one.

So, there we have it – is everyone clear? I am glad to say that, as a result of this carefully thought-through plan, there no areas of concern for the school’s management team.

Rod Grant is headteacher at Clifton Hall School in Edinburgh. This piece was originally published as a blog post

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