Express & Star

Full advice issued to schools in the region following the Queen's death

Schools in the West Midlands have been issued guidance by the Department of Education on how to respond to the Queen's death.

Schools will remain open as usual but some parts of the day may change.

Guidance on possible school closures during the funeral in roughly two weeks time will be provided in due course, but schools are remaining open for now.

"Once details of the funeral are confirmed by the Royal Household, we will write to you with further guidance and information," the Department of Education said in their email to schools.

While the information is aimed at education professionals, there is some information in the guidance that will no doubt be useful to parents so we've put it together below:

Early Years

The Department of Education have advised teachers and headteachers in early years settings that "there is no obligation for settings to observe particular behaviours during the mourning period."

"Depending on the nature and location of your setting and the tone of planned events, some settings may wish to consider closing or postponing events," the advice continued.

Primary Schools

There's a suggestion that primary school teachers might want to come up with special activities.

The Department of Education wrote: "Primary schools may also wish to adapt ‘Queen Elizabeth: A Platinum Jubilee Celebration’, the commemorative book distributed to state-funded primary schools across the United Kingdom in 2022.

Schools and Further Education

The advice is that all schools and further education establishments "should remain open."

The guidance states: "Whilst normal attendance is expected, headteachers continue to have the power to authorise leaves of absence for pupils in exceptional circumstances.

"Any requests for leave of absence should be considered on a case-by-case basis taking into account individual circumstances."

Special Activities

There is also a chance that some schools will suspend normal routines to conduct special activities, such as "holding assemblies or adapting planned lessons to reflect the period of national mourning and commemorate the life of Her Majesty may wish to repurpose the lesson materials about the Queen’s Jubilee produced by Royal Collections Trust and The National Archives."

Supporting Children

The advice also reminds teachers, lecturers and early years colleagues and social workers around the country that they have "an important role to play in reassuring children and young people at this difficult time."

"If children and young people are upset, Minded is a source of information to support children and young people to manage death and loss."