Parentkind’s view is that schools should follow UK, Welsh and Northern Ireland Government guidance in relation to wearing of a face covering or mask in schools and other education settings which currently states that it is not recommended.
The Welsh Government guidance to schools does not recommend face masks or coverings. The guidance is clear that schools should put in processes for their removal when children arrive at school wearing them.
Government guidance in Northern Ireland is currently that Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) should not be worn by children within schools.
Schools and other education or childcare settings should therefore not require children and learners to wear face coverings. Changing habits, cleaning and hygiene measures such as regular handwashing are effective in controlling the spread of the virus.
Face coverings or masks may be beneficial for short periods when indoors if there is a risk of close social contact with people you do not usually meet, or if social distancing cannot be maintained, for example on public transport or in some shops. However this does not apply to schools or other education settings.
Where parents have specific concerns they should consult with the school on the best way forward and act on medical advice.