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Compliance Risk Assessment Update May 2021

The Prime Minister’s 17th May statement can be read here. All other protective measures remain in place and regular rapid testing will continue to help find and isolate asymptomatic cases when they do occur.


The guidance on face coverings in education has been amended to reflect that from 17th May face coverings will no longer be recommended for pupils and students in classrooms or communal areas, in all schools and colleges. Face coverings will also no longer be recommended for staff in classrooms. In all schools and colleges, the Government continues to recommend that face coverings should be worn by staff and visitors in situations outside of classrooms where social distancing is not possible.


Importantly, the guidance also says: “The reintroduction of face coverings for pupils, students or staff may be advised for a temporary period in response to particular localised outbreaks, including variants of concern. In all cases, any educational drawbacks should be balanced with the benefits of managing transmission. The Local Action Committee structure (Bronze/Silver/Gold) should be used in such circumstances to re-introduce the use of face coverings. Immediate outbreak response (at the level of individual settings or a cluster of settings) remains for local Directors of Public Health to advise on.”


Schools Covid-19 Operational Guidance has also been amended to reflect the above. In addition to amendments to the section of face coverings, there are also other significant changes to the guidance, summarised below.


Pupils abroad who are unable to return


Page 32 of the guidance contains a new section on pupils abroad who are unable to return. Please refer to the full detail in the guidance on:


  • Recording attendance – attendance registers and codes;
  • Admissions register;
  • Remote education;
  • Teacher assessments; and
  • Travel and quarantine.


School workforce


The guidance amends some aspects of CEV and CV staff – please refer to page 35 following. An additional section has been added which confirms that specialists, therapists, clinicians and other support staff for pupils with special educational needs and disability (SEND) can attend schools to provide interventions as usual where this is reasonably necessary, including where this requires them to move between settings.


Educational visits


Page 47 following sets out new guidance in relation to educational visits. Please refer to the guidance for the full details.


  • Educational day visits were able to resume from 12th April. Any educational day visits must be conducted in line with relevant COVID-secure guidelines and regulations and a full risk assessment in relation to all educational visits must be undertaken to ensure they can be undertaken safely. As part of this risk assessment, you will need to consider what control measures need to be used and follow wider advice on visiting indoor and outdoor venues. You should consult the health and safety guidance on educational visits when considering visits.


  • Domestic residential educational visits can be undertaken from 17th May. Any domestic residential educational visits must be conducted in line with relevant COVID-19 guidance and regulations and risk assessments should be undertaken. Annex C sets out the conditions that should be met when planning and undertaking a residential educational visit as part of Step 3. There is also a section on making new bookings (page 48) and advice on speaking to insurance providers.


  • International visits: The government has now published red, amber and green list rules for entering England. Given the complexities attached to international travel at this stage of the pandemic, the Government recommends schools do not go on any international visits this academic year up to and including 5th September 2021. The position beyond 5th September will be reviewed again in advance of Step 4. There is a special note on credit notes - any school or trust holding ATOL or ABTA refund credit notes may use these credit notes to rebook educational or international visit.


Transitional, taster and open days


Transitional, taster and open days can go ahead (page 49 of the guidance) following completion of a thorough risk assessments before running transitional, taster and open days to ensure that they are run in line with your system of controls and align with the advice contained within this guidance and the roadmap out of lockdown.


The following guidance documents have also been updated to reflect these changes:



  • SEND and specialist settings - additional operational guidance - updated to reflect Step 3 of the Roadmap from 17th May 2021, including visits to Special residential settings (chapter 4), asymptomatic testing (chapter 11), funding (chapter 12), face coverings (System of Controls – Annex A) and confirmatory PCR tests (System of Controls – Annex A).


  • Actions for early years and childcare providers - information has been included on staff wellbeing, clinically extremely vulnerable, safe removal of face coverings, attending more than one setting, visits to setting by external professionals, parent and child groups, organised performances, trips, childminders meeting other childminders.