Ahead of the February half term, Councillor Anna Keen, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, and Bristol City Council Director for Education and Skills, Alison Hurley, share a joint statement to schools, teachers, and parents across Bristol.
“The start of 2021 has been a challenging and frustrating time for many parents across Bristol who have yet again had to juggle day jobs and home schooling, and so we’d like to thank you all for your continued cooperation.
“We know that balancing work, parenting, and teaching is tricky, so if you need support please do reach out for help. If you have any questions or need support with home schooling resources, please contact your school directly. If you need help receiving food, medicines, or other necessities, please contact the free We Are Bristol helpline on 0800 694 0184 (Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am-2pm).
“The commitment of our schools and staff in protecting and educating Bristol’s children and young people has continued to be superb this half term. School staff have continued to balance remote and face-to-face learning, alongside reacting quickly to the rollout and additional changes to weekly rapid testing.
“Schools have also been working with us to ensure we can continue to provide free school meals during this challenging time. Over February half term, the council will use some of the funding it has received from the government’s COVID Winter Grant Scheme, in the form of vouchers, to offer help to all children and young people who are eligible for free school meals in Bristol.
We have continued to work closely with schools and Public Health England (PHE) to support education settings affected by the virus. Between 4 January and 10 February 2021, there were 110 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in students and 135 cases in staff across 126 schools and nurseries in Bristol (including special and alternative learning provision (ALP)). In line with PHE advice, six out of the total of 295 in schools in Bristol had to close during this period, and we thank you all for playing your part in preventing further transmission and protecting each other.
School closures during the first half term include:
- North Star 240 (previously known as Bristol Gateway) School in the Avonmouth and Lawrence Weston ward
- Merchants’ Academy Primary School in the Hartcliffe & Withywood ward
- Ss Peter and Paul RC Primary School in the Clifton Down ward
- Learning Partnership West Independent School in the Southville ward
- Snowdon Village (Bristol Futures Academy) in the Easton ward
- Barton Hill Academy Primary School in the Lawrence Hill ward
“Schools in England will remain closed after February half term until at least Monday 8 March to all pupils, except vulnerable and key worker children. The government has stated that schools will get two weeks’ notice of a return date, so we will make sure we provide an update as soon as possible.”
See the latest COVID-19 guidance and information on support in Bristol here.