From Monday 8 March schools in Bedford Borough will open to all students.
Twice-weekly testing using rapid lateral flow tests will be available for free to all households with primary, secondary school and college aged children and young people, including their childcare and support bubbles.
This will help to find more COVID-19 cases, break chains of transmission and help keep educational settings as safe as possible.
Rapid test kits for home use can be collected from some local testing sites. Most collection points are open from 1.30pm to 7pm and although you do not need to make an appointment, please do not visit a collection point outside opening hours, as it may be used to test people with coronavirus symptoms outside these times.
Find your nearest collection point by using the NHS search tool.
If you are unable to collect order a limited number are available to order online from the Government website.
We strongly recommend you go to your child's school's website or Facebook page for the latest information.
The Department for Education is running a helpline for questions about Coronavirus for staff, parents and young people:
- Telephone: 0800 046 8687
- Email: DfE.email@example.com
- Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday)
As far as possible, we would like to encourage children who can safely and appropriately cycle or walk, to do so.
For children who use dedicated home to school transport, commissioned by Bedford Borough Council - In line with DfE guidance, operators are not required to adhere to the same social distancing measures that are in place on public transport. This means that they are largely running their normal scheduled service with additional protective measures in place, as agreed by Public Health. For further information please read the Parent/ Carer guide to transport during COVID-19.
For children who use the public bus network - social distancing is still in place and available capacity on public bus services will be reduced in line with the latest Department for Transport guidance. The Council has been liaising with local transport providers and schools/colleges to identify areas of concern and larger vehicles, designated school buses and / or additional resource has been implemented, where possible. Social distancing does not apply to vehicles that have been closed to members of the general public and are only transporting school students. All schools have been advised to encourage children who usually travel to school on public transport to consider cycling or walking as an alternative means of travel, where possible.
Please read the following guides of how we are providing school transport in line with the current public health guidelines during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
If you believe your child is eligible to transport, and you require additional information regarding entitlement to transport or bus services please contact the relevant Transport Team listed below:
School Transport Entitlement Team: School.Transport@bedford.gov.uk 01234 276713
Mainstream School Transport Team: Mainstream.Transport@Bedford.gov.uk 01234 276528
SEND Transport Team: Client.Transport@Bedford.gov.uk 01234 276116
Please be advised that new applications for transport will be processed within 15 working days.