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Back to school support available for Harlow families

Education: Secondary / Sat 15th Aug 2020 at 07:07am

ESSEX County Council (ECC) is encouraging families across the county to find out about the advice, guidance and support on offer to help children and young people prepare to go back to school in September.

Confidential advice and support is available locally across a range of areas, including emotional wellbeing and resilience, coping with change and travelling to school, all of which are key areas as children and young people get ready to return to the classroom.

For some children and young people, this will be the first time they have been back to school since March and so ECC will be raising awareness of the local organisations and information that can help families over the coming weeks through its Every Family Matters campaign.

Cllr Ray Gooding, ECC’s Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said: “Going back to school is a really exciting time, although we know that the last few months have been strange and unsettling for lots of children and young people, and that they may need additional support over the next few weeks in order to prepare.

“I’d like to reassure families that education colleagues across the county have been working extremely hard to ensure schools and settings are prepared to welcome children back for the Autumn term, so that children can return to school feeling confident and ready to learn.”

The support available to Essex families also includes the summer holiday clubs programme which saw the county council invest around £240,000 into 21,600 free activity camp sessions during the six-week summer holiday.

The aim of the programme is to help children to stay physically active and socially connected, as well as supporting them to get back into a structured routine, ahead of returning to school.

Cllr Louise McKinlay, ECC’s Cabinet Member for Children and Families, said: “We are pleased to be able to offer a range of support to help Essex families, including our summer activities programme, which we know will be particularly welcome as children prepare to go back to school.

“We know that not only will many young people be feeling nervous about returning, many parents and carers will also be feeling apprehensive about sending their child back and may be unsure of how best to support their child.

“This is why we’ve made every effort to ensure there is a wide range support in place, with help available for parents and young people individually, as well as families together. I would encourage anyone who might be struggling, or who might just need that little bit of extra help, to find out more.”

Throughout August and September, ECC will be sign-posting to support, resources and local organisations that can help on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Additionally, ECC’s Stop.Swap.GO! campaign provides an information service that can help and encourage parents, carers and students to walk, scoot and cycle safely to school.

More information about the type of support available and how families can access local organisations that can help them, can be found on the Staying Well Children and Families page.

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