Update- Monday 7th December 2020 (Pembrokeshire County Council statement- face coverings still mandatory on buses for all secondary age pupils)


School bus pupils urged to keep face coverings on for the whole journey

Pembrokeshire secondary school pupils who take the bus to school must keep their face coverings on during the whole of the journey – and sanitise their hands before getting on.

That’s the message from the school transport section at Pembrokeshire County Council who say not all pupils are sticking to the rules.

It comes as Covid-19 cases have been confirmed at several Pembrokeshire schools over the past two weeks.

College students are also being urged to follow the same rules.

“We’re appealing to pupils and students to keep their face coverings on for the whole journey – and for their parents to speak to them about how important it is,” said Councillor Phil Baker, Cabinet Member for Infrastructure.

“We cannot emphasise strongly enough how vital this is if we are to minimise the risk of Covid-19 being spread.

“It is also essential that every pupil sanitises their hands before boarding their vehicle – every bus is fitted with a hand sanitiser at the entrance for this purpose.

“We are not immune from coronavirus in Pembrokeshire and it is clearly among us. We must all do everything we can to prevent it spreading from one person to another.”  

The Council has today (Monday, 12th October) introduced seating plans on school buses.

This is to ensure that if a pupil is confirmed to have Covid-19, then it is easy to establish where they were sitting prior to that confirmation – and avoids the need to quarantine the whole bus.

“We can use CCTV where this is available but not all routes are fitted with it so we will be introducing seating plans on every vehicle and seek everyone’s co-operation to ensure these are strictly adhered to” explained Councillor Baker. 

“With college transport, students will fill in a register as they board the bus.

“Clearly, we want to make sure all students have maximum opportunity to access learning. But for the safety of all, given the current situation, unfortunately any who persistently refuse to follow these reasonable safety precautions will be given a warning, and ultimately transport could be withdrawn”. 

Face coverings are mandatory on school buses and public buses for everyone aged 11 and above (unless they are exempt for a medical reason). They are recommended for those aged 10 and under but are not compulsory.

 For more details visit our webpages at:  https://www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/children-and-schools-transition-to-the-new-normal/covid-19-school-transport-information