Secondary school pupils will have to wear face masks in school corridors in Altrincham and other areas of England where local lockdown is in place.
Following an update to government policy tonight, face coverings will become mandatory in school corridors and other communal areas where social distancing is more difficult.
Head teachers in other secondary schools outside of local lockdown will also have the flexibility to introduce masks in their schools.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson says the update – which does not apply to primary school pupils – followed advice from the World Health Organization (WHO).
He said: “Our priority is to get children back to school safely. At each stage we have listened to the latest medical and scientific advice. We have therefore decided to follow the World Health Organisation’s new advice.
“In local lockdown areas children in year 7 and above should wear face coverings in communal spaces. Outside of local lockdown areas face coverings won’t be required in schools, though schools will have the flexibility to introduce measures if they believe it is right in their specific circumstances.
“I hope these steps will provide parents, pupils and teachers with further reassurance.”
The WHO had issued new guidance on August 21st, saying that “children aged 12 and over should wear a mask under the same conditions as adults, in particular when they cannot guarantee at least a one-metre distance from others and there is widespread transmission in the area”.
Altrincham and the whole of Trafford remains in local lockdown at the moment, with the number of cases in the borough down to 19 per 100,000 people for the week ending August 22nd.