Sandpits, playdough and water games will be banned when Britain’s biggest nursery chain reopens its 378 centres – The Sun

ONE of the country's biggest nursery school chains revealed plans to keep little ones safe when they return in June.

Busy Bees have said that they will divide classes up into close friendship groups and that playdough and sandpits will be banned.

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As the 378 centres across the country reopen from June 1, bosses have made clear that children will not be required to play in hoops or within lines drawn on the floor.

All children and staff will have their temperature checked upon arrival and those dropping kids off will have to abide by the two-metre distancing rule.

Throughout the day, as children enjoy getting back into a routine with pals, they will have their temperatures checked and hands regularly washed.

Water play, as well as sandpits and playdough will be off the agenda to limit the spread of germs.

Tots will have to wear facemasks during temperature checks, but for the rest of the day they are allowed to play uncovered.

Busy Bees kept 100 of its branches open during coronavirus lockdown to help support families of key workers and vulnerable children.

Emily Brimson-Keight, head of safety at Busy Bees told Wigan Today: "There is much speculation about how life after lockdown could look in nurseries and schools, and parents are understandably very anxious.

"The biggest priority for us is, and always will be, the safety and welfare and happiness of the children in our care.

She added: "Now lockdown is set to be relaxed, we're keen to offer assurance and debunk the myths about the new normal for parents at this unique time, and are confident out plans ensure the safety and crucially, the development and happiness of children when we welcome them back."

Parents are understandably very anxious.

The majority of primary school pupils are not expected to return to class until September.

Nick Gibb, minister for schools, admitted that it was "difficult to say" whether all children between 4 and 11 would head back to school before the summer holidays.

Reception, years one and six will be starting to return from June 1 under Boris Johnson's plans.

But years two, three, four and five are likely to stay at home until September.

Mr Gibb said that "remote education" is likely to continue "for the majority of pupils and young people probably until the end of the summer term".

A primary school in Gloucester reveled the strict three-strike policy that will be enforced when pupils return.

Kingsholm Church of England school will be dropped off into pens and sent home if they refuse to social distance.

Headteacher Jan Buckland said the holding pens will be “roughly a quarter of the size of a netball court”.

She added the barriers will consist of “bollards with a bit of ceiling tape around to designate the area, some cones and things”, Gloucester Live reports.

Youngsters will arrive at schools in a staggered system with queues and walkways for parents and pupils to follow.

Some schools, such as Kingsholm, are using timeslots based on surnames, with parents being asked to drop children off alone, without siblings or other children.

Later, a member of staff will take each group to their classroom.

There is also a set route parents must follow through the school site, arriving and leaving by different entrances.

Mrs Buckland said that if pupils refuse to follow the strict social distancing rules they will be sent home – with a three-strike policy in place.

She added: “We will talk to the parents, if a child is being [non-compliant] then what we will do is phone the parents and the parents will then have to come and collect them.”


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