With hundreds of schools across London, Kent and East Sussex set to reopen next week, Southeastern has issued a ‘Back to School’ video to parents and students to act as a reminder of personal safety measures while travelling on the network.
Chatham and Clarendon Grammar School student, 16 year old Bradley Bissett highlights the simple steps pupils must think about before leaving the house on Monday morning. The video, which has been shared with schools across the network, will also be hosted on Southeastern’s website and published on its social channels. To view the video, click here.
To accommodate the increase in passenger numbers and help with social distancing, Southeastern will also be running longer trains on 15 of its busiest services.
The checklist, summarised below, is also being featured on posters at stations:
- Timetables – Make sure to check timetables in advance.
- Tickets – Apply for Southeastern’s smartcard, The Key to buy and download tickets at home.
- Face – Wear a face covering on trains and in stations, unless exempt or under 11 years old.
- Space – Maintain social distancing while at stations and on board trains.
- Extra staff - Additional staff will be at the busiest student stations to control the flow of students, guide passengers through one-way systems and promote social distancing.
- Be considerate – Behave in a calm and respectful manner, particularly around other passengers who may be anxious about travelling.
- One-way systems – One-way systems and extra queuing arrangements are in place at every station on the network.
- Hands – Wash hands regularly and carry hand sanitiser. Southeastern’s trains and stations have toilet facilities to wash hands, as well as hand sanitiser dispenses.
Hundreds of students pass through Southeastern stations on any typical school day and the rail company is committed to ensuring everyone can travel with confidence. This includes making sure that if children forget their face masks, that they can ask the station staff, who will be happy to provide a disposable mask.
Steve Bradford, station staff at Tonbridge added:
"Many of us are parents ourselves, so we know how excited the children are to get back to school and see their friends. There will be lots to remember on Monday morning, but we hope that by creating a simple checklist that travelling by train is at least one less thing that parents and students need to worry about. In addition to our extra cleaning regimes and social distancing measures, we'll also have more staff at the busiest stations to make sure that every student travels with confidence."
The checklist complements Southeastern’s Back to School guide introduced at the beginning of the school year in September 2020, which communicates safety protocols across the network, including enhanced deep cleaning processes, contactless payment facilities and hand sanitiser dispensers.
David Statham, Managing Director of Southeastern said:
“We take our responsibility for getting students to school incredibly seriously. Our network provides a lifeline for students across London and the South East in accessing their education and that is why we have been working with schools across the county to ensure parents and children have all the information they need to travel with confidence from Monday 8 March.”
Southeastern has collated all safety information onto its “Back to School” webpage (www.southeasternrailway.co.uk/backtoschool), to provide passengers, parents and schools with direct access to the latest measures and requirements for safe travel.