11 January 2021
Early indications show there has been a successful start to the Spring school term today in Jersey.
Thousands of students have returned to schools and colleges following an extended Christmas school holiday break that allowed for an enhanced testing programme to be rolled out, and allowed headteachers and their staff teams additional time to prepare lessons and ensure learning environments were safe.
Acting Education Minister Deputy Jeremy Maçon said: “Feedback shows that we have had a safe and successful return to school today.
“Senior officials from the Department for Children, Young People, Education and Skills (CYPES) have been in touch with every school to review their experience and to offer any further support required and I am pleased to report that it has been a positive start to the school term with some schools reporting positive reactions from parents, carers and student and staff attendance at encouraging levels.
“Attendance data is collected twice a day at morning and afternoon registration and is, therefore, still being collated and verified for the first day back. It is anticipated that today’s figures will be published tomorrow afternoon with retrospective updates everyday thereafter.”
The Scientific and Technical Advisory Cell (STAC) had previously advised that students should go back to school today, Monday, 11 January 2021 and it remains the view of STAC that the children and young people should return to school or college, emphasising that the longer students are out of school the more detrimental it is to their physical and mental well-being, educational outcomes and, as a consequence, their life chances.
Deputy Maçon added: “I would like to thank everyone involved who has worked so hard in preparing and planning to open our schools safely today and I am pleased to hear that there has been a positive start so far.
“We know that this is a difficult time for our whole school community - teachers, school and college staff and especially our students, parents and carers.
“The wellbeing and safety of our children and young people and our school and college staff are paramount and we will continue to keep the situation in schools and colleges under constant review with our scientific, public health and education advisers.
“I know that there were many students feeling excited to see their friends and teachers today and I also know that some were feeling a little bit nervous too, which is to be expected.
“I would like to reassure everyone that the Department, headteachers, teachers, lecturers and school staff are doing all they can to ensure that students’ education is disrupted as little as possible and school life can continue as normal as it possibly can.