We have received the following update, via IOL, from the School Travel Sector Stakeholder Group (STSSG). Please note that the dates relate to the English ‘roadmap’ and just because English schools may be allowed to travel does not necessarily mean they will be able to visit us in Wales! The next Welsh Government review is, of course, expected on 12 March and the SSTG also reminds us that “the week commencing 15th March is the key decision date for the sector and I would direct you to ensure that your customers are aware of this as the decision deadline rather than anything prior to this date“.
“As you will be aware, the School Travel Sector Stakeholder Group have been working with DfE to restart the sector as soon as possible. Since the announcement of the Government Roadmap, the work has accelerated notably with final submissions to the Government and an accelerated decision timetable. The STSSG has made its proposal for educational visits to restart, in line with the Government roadmap, which has been received positively.
“The headline proposal is as below:
- Step 1 – 8th March – Schools restart
- Step 2 – 29th March – Day Educational Visits are permitted (no later than 12th April in line with UK Government plan)
- Step 3 – 17th May – Residential Educational Visits are permitted with specific COVID-secure measures in place
- Step 4 – 21st June – Educational Visits can take place with revised COVID-secure measures, in line with Government requirements
“We have continued detailed discussions with the Department on this basis and expect to have a final decision on the restart of school travel and its roadmap in the week commencing 15th March. Please note there will be no additional update to DfE guidance on travel for educational settings prior to this. While we continue our work with the DfE, it is vitally important that you continue to put pressure on the Department via your local media and MPs.”