Kent County council has stated:
All of our transport services will be running as usual but there will be some differences designed to make sure that there is enough space for all children needing to travel and that the transport is as safe as possible.
Social distancing will apply to most buses, however the government have said that some services that are mainly used for schools can be changed to only carry school children. On these buses, operators can then use more of the space on the bus making use of all forward facing seats.
We have also been given funding to provide extra buses where we are worried about social distancing space. From the start of the new academic year, we expect over 80 extra buses to be running with fewer children on board. Therefore we are confident that there will be enough space.
If there are any problems, then we will work to fix them by providing alternative transport.
For students travelling to school by bus, they must:
- observe social distancing rules put in place
- be seated at all times
- use contact-less payment or travel cards where necessary
- not eat or drink on the bus
- keep all windows open for ventilation
- follow instructions provided by the transport provider
- wash or sanitize their hands before and after their journey
- wear face coverings.
Transport provider guidance
To ensure the safety of children travelling to school, transport providers must:
- raise cleaning standards and pay attention to high contact areas
- increase ventilation by keeping all windows open (where possible)
- work with schools and colleges to support any staggered start and finish times and “bubbles” where possible
- wear face coverings for all staff unless separated by a perspex screen
- work with schools to cater for staggered times (where possible)
- ensure passengers sit on front facing seats only
- accept all bus passes to allow the student to get to school
- provide extra vehicles on busier services for students only (where possible)
- monitor all services and new guidance for any changes.