Schools and nurseries across North Somerset are being advised to consider re-opening on Monday.
North Somerset Council has written to all schools and nurseries in the district to advise them they should consider re-opening their doors to wider groups of children from Monday, June 8.
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Many primary schools across the UK opened their doors to reception, year one and year six students on Monday.
However, in North Somerset, council chiefs advised schools to remain closed following an outbreak of coronavirus at Weston General Hospital.
A programme of testing was undertaken at the hospital of staff and patients following the outbreak and measures – including closing the A&E department and stopping all new admissions – were put in place.
Further testing has been carried out alongside data and contact tracing work.
Analysis of the data has now been carried out by Public Health England.
Health bosses have now confirmed there is no evidence that the outbreak has spread into the wider community.
North Somerset Council deputy leader and lead member for health Councillor Mike Bell said: “Our advice last week was given as a precautionary measure, as clearly we did not want children, families or staff exposed to any increased risk of contracting the virus while the community impact of the hospital outbreak remained unknown.
“I am extremely pleased that the analysis undertaken by Public Health England has concluded that, when taking into account the significant number of new cases identified at the hospital plus increased finding of new cases through good access to testing locally, the background level of community infection in North Somerset is considered to be more in line with the regional average rate.
“However, the risk of infection is still with us and everyone needs to follow government advice regarding social distancing and hygiene to ensure we can all begin to enjoy a more normal way of life.
“I would urge everyone to remember the ongoing risk as they make decisions about their day-to-day activities.”
Health chiefs have said the upturn in the number of cases of Covid 19 in North Somerset was due to the outbreak at the hospital.
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Education chiefs have been busy preparing for the re-opening of schools by putting a number of measures in place to ensure social distancing guidelines can be adhered to.
Council bosses have said that the decision on whether schools should re-open on Monday is down to each school’s leadership team.
North Somerset Council executive member for children’s services Councillor Catherine Gibbons said: “I am pleased with the outcome of the work by our colleagues at Public Health England as it allows our schools and nurseries to re-open when they feel ready to do so.
“As I have said before, each setting’s circumstances is different and some will be able to introduce social distancing measures more easily than others.
“It is down to each school’s leadership team and the governors to decide when the time is right for them, and we will continue to support them with those decisions.
“I have been hugely impressed by the efforts that the local teaching community, support staff, parents and pupils have gone to over the past three months to ensure that education has continued in extremely difficult circumstances.
“This is not the end to the school year that any of us would have wished for, but I hope that the next few weeks gives at least some of our pupils the opportunity to return to lessons and to see their friends in the real world for the first time in many weeks.”