Students will be kept in year group ‘bubbles’, asked to wash their hands on arrival and encouraged to bring a packed lunch, to be ‘Covid secure’ when they return to school in September.

Staff at Castle and Marlwood schools are busy putting plans into place ahead of the new academic year, in line with government guidelines.

Students will have different entrances to the school depending on their year group, while there will also be changes to break and lunchtimes.

At Castle School there will now be two half-hour breaks, staggered so that not all students are out of lessons at the same time.

In a letter to parents, headteacher Joe Docherty said: “Staggering the breaks will ensure the bubbles can remain separate in different areas of the school, ease pressure on the canteen and the toilet areas and allow cleaning to take place during breaks.

“Presently, within a normal school day, the canteen is clear within 30 minutes and so there is plenty of time allocated.

“Catering will be available at both breaks, but if your child is able to bring a packed lunch, that will certainly help to reduce any queues for the canteen that may be caused due to having to keep students separate.

“Students eligible for free school meals should still get their meal in school as normal.

“The measures that the school is putting in place are designed to ensure students’ and staff safety as far as is possible, while delivering an education that will allow all our children to thrive and make progress.

“It is very important for both well-being and education that students return to as near normal school experience as possible.”

Marlwood School has confirmed there will be no breakfast club, nor food available during morning break, for at least terms one and two.

In a letter to parents Marlwood headteacher Del Planter said: “ I would like to thank all staff, students and parents/carers for their fortitude and support during what has been a challenging time for all of us.

“We have needed to adapt to new ways of doing things and have not always got that right as a school but I am proud of what we have achieved and learnt during these unprecedented times.”

At both schools year groups will be allocated outdoor zones where they are allowed to spend their break, while indoors a one-way system will be in place.