Thousands of pupils in the Isle of Man will be welcomed back to their classes next week, for the start of the new school year.
With the risk of children becoming ill from coronavirus currently considered very low, the attendance of all pupils will be compulsory when schools open on Wednesday 9 September.
Dr Alex Allinson MHK, Minister for Education, Sport and Culture said:
‘Attending school is vitally important for our children’s education and just as importantly, their mental wellbeing.
‘Current international evidence has shown that COVID-19 infections and outbreaks are uncommon across all educational settings and the re-opening of schools has been associated with very few local outbreaks.
‘The Isle of Man Government will be working closely with head teachers to ensure all our schools remain safe for pupils and staff.’
As attendance rules return to normal, parents must ensure their child attends the school at which they are registered when the autumn term begins – with schools’ again required to record attendance and follow up absence. Schools will also have the option to issue sanctions, including fixed penalty notices to parents whose children fail to attend without good reason.
In order to protect people from the virus, the Isle of Man Government has maintained border restrictions, which means those who travel off Island must self-isolate for 14 days on their return. With these measures in place the Isle of Man Government recommends against taking holidays that affect school attendance at a time when teachers are working hard to enable all students to progress with their studies.