Questions and answers : Measures related to Covid-19 in schools and childcare facilities

On this page you will find the most frequent questions and answers on the measures taken in the education sector.

 

General questions

My child has been put into quarantine or isolation. Am I entitled to leave for family reasons (congé pour raisons familiales) in relation with Covid-19?

If your child has been put into quarantine because he/she has had close contacts with an infected person, or has been put into isolation because he himself/she herself is infected, you are entitled to take exceptional leave for family reasons in relation with Covid-19.

In both cases, the days of leave you take for family reasons are not deducted from the days provided for statutorily for ordinary leave for family reasons.

You can also make use of this exceptional leave if your child is not attending the maison relais following one positive case among the pupils in his school class. In fact, in this situation it is recommended that your child does not attend a daycare facility outside school hours.

See also the questions: “If my child’s class is kept separated from the rest of the school community because one of the children has tested positive for Covid-19, can my child still go to a maison relais (daycare facility)?” and “What happens if there is a single positive case in a school class?”

Application form and useful information at http://guichet.lu/cocrf

How is the health strategy being supervised in the education sector?

A ‘Covid-19 and Education’ scheme covers health monitoring and decision-making. It is organised on the basis of a Coordination Cell at the Ministry of Education, Children and Youth, which is responsible for collecting data from schools, and a Comité de pilotage (steering committee), called upon to adopt any additional measures the situation may demand. The members of the Comité de pilotage are experts from the Health Inspection, the Health Directorate, the Schools Medical Service, the Directorate General of Elementary Education, the Directorate General of Secondary Education, and the head of the Coordination Cell.

Where can I find information on the Coronavirus Covid-19?

Please consult the website www.covid19.lu. You can also call 247-65533 for further information.

Where can I find further useful information?

You can address your questions via this contact form to www.schouldoheem.lu.

The 8002-9090 helpline providing general information on measures concerning the national education system and educational advice can be reached on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 12 noon and from 1 to 4 p.m.

You can also refer to the website of the Ministry of Education, Children and Youth: www.men.lu.

To follow the news and receive regular updates on the developments of the crises, please also consult www.covid19.lu and the national media.

Who should I contact if I have questions about children and young people with special needs or disabilities?

The social workers of the Service de la scolarisation des élèves à besoins spécifiques (S-EBS) are at your disposal.

They can be reached at following number: 247-85180 or by e-mail: social.s-ebs@men.lu.

Who can I turn to for psychological advice or support?

The CePAS (Centre psycho-social et d'acompagnement scolaires) offers a listening ear, advice and psychological support to students, parents and teachers, also in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic :

- by phone on 247-75910 ;

- through face-to-face consultations (free of charge, by appointment only);

- by teleconsultation on request. 

Working hours are Monday to Friday, also during school holidays, from 8.30 am to 12 noon and from 1 to 5 pm. 


Contact: facebook and messenger: @cepasluxembourg, email: info@cepas.public.lu, web page: www.cepas.lu

Where can I find educational material and activity ideas for children online?

The website www.schouldoheem.lu provides access to a wide range of teaching materials in many fields, for parents, students and teachers in elementary and secondary education and vocational training. 

The "kannerdoheem" section offers activities and fun ideas for families, small groups of friends or children aged 1 to 4 and 4 to 12. The section is divided into types of activities such as thinking, being creative, thinking of others and being on the move, without forgetting the DIY enthusiasts!

On www.aktivdoheem.lu you can find tips on how to become or stay physically active. The activities are divided into four categories: parents with children, teenagers, seniors and small groups of children.

 

Day-care facilities

What health measures apply in crèches and mini-crèches?

Barrier gestures for children

Hand washing is the flagship barrier gesture. The staff sensitises the children according to their age and shows them the right gestures.

Wearing a mask, bandana (buff) or scarf is strictly forbidden before the age of two (risk of suffocation). It is not recommended for children under the age of 6, who do not accept it well. It can increase the risk of infection because the child regularly touches the mask and face with his hands. Special instructions (such as wearing special masks) may apply to highly vulnerable children, as instructed by their doctor.

Activities should take place outdoors as much as possible. Children under the age of 13 do not need to wear a mask or to respect social distancing when playing outside.

It should be avoided as far as possible, to use toys that cannot be cleaned properly.

Barrier gestures for members of staff

Whenever the interpersonal distance of 2 metres between adults cannot be respected, the wearing of a mask, bandana (buff) or scarf covering the mouth and nose is recommended. Other precautionary measures, such as social distancing or wearing a mask when interacting with people from outside the day-care centre, is compulsory.

In the presence of children, members of staff cannot always cover their faces because children need to see facial expressions.

Physical contact with babies is of course maintained. With older children, physical contact is still possible and sometimes necessary (consoling the child, helping him or her to get dressed, etc.). The adult ensures that hands and possibly his/her face and the child's face are washed after such physical contact.

The premises are cleaned, aired and ventilated thoroughly.

These measures apply to all types of crèches or mini-crèche, whether private or government-licensed.

What health measures apply to day-care centres for school aged children?

Children will remain, as much as possible, always in the same group for all their activities. Groups may not consist of more than 30 children, according to the capacity defined in the centre’s approval.

Activities are to be organized out-doors as much as possible. Activities involving many instances of physical contacts are to be avoided.

At meals, no more than 10 people may sit at the same table.

No social distancing measures nor nose and mouth protection are required during activities taking place within the fixed group. In case of contacts with other groups or with people from outside, the usual precautionary measures and wearing a mask or mouth and nose protection needs to be observed. For example, covering nose and mouth in public transport is compulsory for everyone above the age of 6. The wearing of masks is not recommended for children under the age of 6.

It is also important to raise children and youth awareness for the basic rules of hygiene, such as regular and proper hand washing hand or greeting without physical contact, etc.

It is recommended for adults to wear a mask or a mouth and nose protection each time a physical distance of 2 meters cannot be observed.

The activity leaders are required to complete a specific training on the precautionary measures that have to be put in place.

If my child’s class is kept separated from the rest of the school community because one of the children has tested positive for COVID-19, can my child still go to a maison relais (daycare facility)?

If a class is kept separated from the rest of the school community, it is recommended that the pupils do not attend a daycare facility outside school hours.

If somehow parents are unable to stay at home with their child, the childcare facility is invited to welcome the child, while isolating it as much as possible. If the child is over 6 years old, he or she must wear a mask.

For more details see the question below “What happens if there is a single positive case in a school class?”.

My child is not in school yet and attends a childcare facility. At the facility he has had contact with a person who has tested positive. What happens now?

If your son/daughter has had close and direct contact (for 15 minutes or more, in a distance of less than 2 metres and without a mask) with a person who has tested positive to COVID-19, he or she will be quarantined. He or she can therefore no longer go to the care facility while waiting for the negative test result. The test is carried out at the earliest 6 days after the last contact with the person who has tested positive.   

 

Elementary education and secondary education

What health measures have been set up in schools for the start of the 2020-2021 school year?

To be able to contain the risk of contamination in school, the necessary health measures are being maintained:

In the classroom:

  • limited movement of pupils,
  • a fixed place for each pupil,
  • aeration and ventilation at regular intervals, with due regard for the safety of pupils (see point 3.3 of the instructions for elementary education staff and point 3.2 of the instructions for secondary education staff)
  • regular cleaning of surfaces,
  • increased hand hygiene (hand washing before start of lessons, after each break, after going to the toilet, before and after each meal)
  • social hygiene: coughing and sneezing into the crook of the elbow, avoiding physical touching (no handshaking, etc).

Within the school:

  • wearing a mask (see question below),
  • staggered breaks,
  • regular cleaning of toilets, etc,
  • fewer contacts outside the classroom,
  • organisation of movements in the school building.

Secondary schools may adopt additional measures, such as making the wearing of a mask compulsory in the classroom, or organising higher classes on an alternating basis (e.g. alternate weeks physically present in the classroom).
 

Does my child have to wear a mask at school?

Children under two years old are not allowed to wear a mask (or anything else covering their nose and mouth); it is not advised for children under six years old.

For children over six years old, a mask must be worn on the way to school and within the school building. It is optional in the classroom and in the schoolyard in elementary education. It is compulsory in the schoolyard at secondary schools. Secondary schools may choose to require pupils to wear a mask in the classroom.

Does my child have to wear a mask on school/public transport?

Children over six years old and young people must wear a mask on school and public transport.

Will there be physical education and swimming classes?

Physical education and swimming classes will resume, with protective measures:

  • preference for outdoor activities,
  • compulsory wearing of masks for pupils over six years old on the way to and from activities and in changing room, up to the start of the activity,
  • hands to be washed at the start and end of the class.

It is not necessary to wear a mask during physical effort.

Are school canteens open?

School canteens will open again at the start of the school year, with protective measures:

• masks to be worn on the way to and from the canteen, up to the time of sitting down at table
• no more than ten people per table
• hands to be washed before and after the meal
• no self-service buffets
• in secondary education, the ‘Frupstuten’ scheme will also continue: pupils may eat their meal in the classroom, but there may not be more than ten people in the room.
 

Can extra-curricular activities take place?

Day excursions are allowed at class level, within the Grand Duchy provided that there are health rules in force at the destination. It is recommended to wear a mask.

What happens if there is a single positive case in a school class as a result of outside contamination?

The person who tested positive is isolated at home.

The class concerned is separated from the other classes. It is not quarantined.

Everyone who has been in contact in the school with the person tested positive is identified (contact tracing). Identified pupils and teachers are given a prescription for testing by the Direction de la santé (Health authority) at the earliest 6 days after the last contact with the positive case.

Pupils more than six years old and teachers must wear a mask for six days following the last contact with the person tested positive and during the testing period.

Pupils are exempted from physical education or swimming lessons. The class does not take its break when other classes do. 

It is recommended that pupils in elementary education have lunch at home. In secondary school, the pupils concerned eat in their classrooms (Frupstuten can be ordered).

Pupils who have no other possibility to get to school may continue to use school transport provided that they comply with the obligation to wear a mask.

It is recommended that pupils and teachers reduce their social contacts outside school for the time of them being kept separated from the rest of the school community. The separation automatically ends on the eighth day after the last contact with the person who’s been tested positive.

You are entitled to leave for family reasons in relation with Covid-19, to stay at home with your child outside school hours.

What happens if there are several positive cases in one class at a school?

 

People who have tested positive are isolated at home.

Everyone who has been in contact in the school with the persons tested positive are identified (contact tracing) and tested.

The class is quarantined until a negative test result is obtained.

Teachers who have respected the barrier gestures are not quarantined.

 

 

 

 

What happens if there is a chain of infection at my child’s school?

If several people have been contaminated at school, additional protective measures proposed by the Comité de pilotage ‘Covid-19 and Education’ (a steering committee whose members are experts of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education, Children and Youth) are set up. These varied measures are adopted according to the situation by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Education, Children and Youth. They may include:

• testing of a large part or all of the school’s population,
• making it compulsory to wear a mask in the classroom,
• quarantining several classes, or even the population of the entire school community,
• abandoning certain activities (school trips/excursions, etc),
• distance teaching for some or all classes, temporarily,
• closing areas where people gather (canteen, library, etc).
 

Will my child be tested regularly?

Your child may be invited to be tested as part of the Large-Scale Testing scheme (as in early September 2020). He/she may be tested if there are one or more positive cases in his/her class or school.

What about teachers and pupils who are vulnerable?

Your doctor must provide a certificate indicating that your child is vulnerable.

Teachers provide the necessary materials for distance learning. The website www.schouldoheem.lu also offers freely available teaching materials.

Teachers receive a ‘certificate of vulnerability’ from their doctor, which is validated by the occupational health practitioner. They teach as agreed with their head teacher or the regional director.

My child has symptoms - what should I do?

Your child must stay at home if he/she is ill or has:

at least one of the following major symptoms: fever; cough; difficulty breathing; chest pain; loss of taste and/or smell for no apparent reason

OR

at least two of the following minor symptoms: muscle pain; fatigue; rhinitis (nasal congestion or runny nose); sore throat; headache; loss of appetite; watery diarrhoea.

If you are unsure, keep your child at home and contact your doctor.

Is distance teaching (‘Schoul doheem’) definitively over?

Distance teaching is still being used for vulnerable people (pupils and teachers) and for classes in quarantine. Teaching materials are made available online at www.schouldoheem.lu.

 

Vocational education and training

Will the deadline for signing an apprenticeship contract be extended?

The deadline for signing apprenticeship contracts - initially set at 31 October, is extended to 31 December, 2020 for students in vocational education and training in a dual mode (combining apprenticeship in a company and vocational education in a secondary vocational school.)

Can an apprentice whose class has been separated from the others because of an isolated positive case go to his/her training company?

When an isolated positive case occurs in the class, the training company  is informed by the school.

If the company cannot guarantee that the apprentice can continously wear a mask and restrict his/her social contacts, it is recommended that the company dispenses with the student's presence for the duration of the separation from the class.

 

Adult education

How can I get information and advice on adult education?

You can contact the Department of Adult Education either by phone at 8002 - 4488 or by e-mail sfa@men.lu .

An appointment can be set up at the Kirchberg site with an adult education advisor, if needed.

Visits without an appointment are to be avoided.

Last update