Guernsey’s schools and early years providers are set to begin reopening from Monday.

Students up to year nine will return on 8 March, with years 10 and above the following day, the Civil Contingencies Authority chairman announced.

Schools were closed when the bailiwick locked down on 23 January after a cluster of Covid cases was discovered.

They opened for vulnerable children and those of essential workers on 8 February.

The staggered approach to reopening will allow younger secondary students to “familiarise themselves with the introduction of their new class bubbles”, the States said.

Director of Public Health Dr Nicola Brink said while the decision was not “entirely risk free”, she believed it was safe to reopen schools with “the right mitigations in place”.

These include:

  • Classroom bubbles for primary and years seven to nine in secondary schools, with year-group bubbles for older students
  • Recommended use of face masks for older students and staff
  • 1m (3ft) social distancing, wherever possible
  • Staggered start and finish times
  • Enhanced cleaning regimes of school buildings
  • Limited school transport service to minimise contact between students
  • Testing strategy for staff in education, as well of for some students

All staff will be offered the chance to be tested for coronavirus voluntarily before reopening and an ongoing testing programme for staff and older students will be used, the States confirmed.

Active coronavirus cases in Guernsey have fallen to 15, with no new infections found over the weekend.

Full States info here: