A HELPLINE has been set up for parents who have concerns about sending their children to school during the coronavirus pandemic.

The scheme has been set up by the school nursing team within Southend Council in response to a number of concerned parents phoning officers on the customer service team.

Over the past week a number of schools across south Essex have reported positive cases.

Southend Council says any parent who has concerns or is considering home-schooling their child due to covid-19 can “talk through their worries” with a member of the school nursing team.

The helpline, which launches on Monday, will operate from Monday to Friday, 9am until 5pm.

Anne Jones, councillor in charge of children and learning, said: “Parents understandably want to keep their children safe and well, especially during a pandemic.

“But the Government have been clear that children should be attending school – for a range of reasons, not least their ongoing education and mental health needs.

“Our schools are following Government guidance, have carried out detailed risk assessments and are working really hard to keep the children, staff, parents and the wider community, safe and well.

“I would urge any parent who is worried about sending their child to school due to coronavirus, to call the helpline and talk their worries through with a member of the school nursing team.

“I am sure they will be able to give reassurance and talk through possible options that they can explore with their school.”

Ring the helpline on 01702 212520.