< Back to blog

26 August 2020 – NDCS – Update on face coverings in education

Posted in News

NDCS have released the following update on their coronavirus blogs to reflect the latest changes on face masks and coverings in education.


“For professionals:


Face masks


For families:


Face masks

Below sets out the NDCS understanding of the current position:

·        In England, face coverings should be worn by students over the age of 11 when moving around the school or in communal areas if they live in an area where there is a local lockdown or the school and college has decided it is necessary. Face coverings may also be required when using school transport. Some pupils may be exempt from any such requirement. However, the Government has said that face coverings are “not necessary” in classrooms and “should be avoided”.  

·        In Northern Ireland, it is recommended that students over the age of 11 wear face coverings in school corridors and communal areas. Face coverings are also recommended when using school transport. Face coverings are not recommended in routine classroom settings but the Government has said that it is “acceptable” for staff and pupils to use face coverings during the routine school day if they wish.

·        In Scotland, face coverings should be worn by pupils aged over 12 when moving around the school (such as in corridors) and in communal areas. They should also be worn when using school transport (if aged over 5). Some young people may be exempt from this requirement. The Government has advised that face coverings are not necessary when in the classroom. At the same time, teachers and pupils can wear face masks or coverings if they would like to. Schools have been told to specifically consider the use of face coverings with deaf children.

·         In Wales, the use of coverings are currently only recommended in education where the social distancing is difficult or when needed to meet a child’s personal care needs, though we understand this may change.  Schools have also been told to specifically consider the implications around face coverings for deaf children, as well as other learners. Separately, some secondary-aged children may be required to wear a face covering on school transport, depending on the local authority policy.


More information on the recent changes are available on the Government websites below:

England – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/face-coverings-in-education

Scotland – https://www.gov.scot/news/face-coverings-in-schools/

NI – https://www.northernireland.gov.uk/node/46052


An update is expected from the Welsh Government later today.”