20th September 2020

In_pictures Pupils and staff to wear face masks at Edinburgh school

In_pictures Pupils and staff to wear face masks at Edinburgh school



image copyrightEPA

image captionPupils will have to wear masks indoors as they move between classes, like these Dutch teenagers

Pupils and staff at a secondary school in Edinburgh have been told to wear face coverings as part of efforts to combat the spread of coronavirus.

From Monday, teachers and pupils at James Gillespie’s High School “must wear face coverings indoors whilst moving around between classes”.

The school said it followed feedback from pupils, staff and parents.

It comes after pictures emerged on social media showing high school pupils in crowded corridors.

Children are not currently required to wear masks in school, but on Thursday, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said secondary school students may be required to wear face coverings in the “near future”.

image copyrightGoogle

image captionPupils, staff and parents were involved in the decision at James Gillespie’s High School

The EIS trade union, which represents teachers, has been calling on ministers to issue “stronger advice on face coverings, where physical distancing is not possible”.

Union leaders highlight that while wearing face coverings is now mandatory in places such as museums, there is no such regulation for schools.

The school said masks, face coverings and visors would be available free of charge to anyone who had lost or forgotten their own.

A Scottish government spokesman said: “The safety and wellbeing of pupils and school staff is a top priority, and the guidance published ahead of the new term sets out clearly what health mitigations should be in place in schools.

“The situation is being closely monitored and we continue to review any emerging scientific evidence that will help us to protect our school community, including on the use of face coverings.

“In the meantime, our guidance provides for schools to adopt a precautionary approach depending on their individual circumstances.”


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