Shropshire parents told to follow Covid rules at drop-off or face £200 fine

Shropshire parents gathering at school gates to drop off children are being urged to follow distancing rules – or risk fines of up to £200.

As concern over the increasing number of cases continues, it has emerged that West Mercia Police officers have visited one county school to make sure parents are following the latest rules – specifically not to congregate in groups of more than six.

It comes after the force's chief constable Anthony Bangham said people breaching the new rules could expect "strict enforcement" and to be given a fine.

Officers visited Aqueduct Primary School in Telford on Thursday to speak to parents and remind them of the regulations, and the potential for fines for those who breach them.

A number of schools in Telford & Wrekin have now issued reminders to parents not to congregate at the school gates, as well as sharing guidance from the local council on making sure people keep their distance when dropping children off or picking them up.

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Since reopening, schools have had to bring in staggered drop off times for pupils in an attempt to reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus.

Telford & Wrekin Council leader Shaun Davies has urged parents to make sure they are following the rules.

He said: "The rule of six applies outside schools. Social distancing is an issue outside schools and we must follow those rules.

"I am aware the police are taking robust action now against people who are not following the rules outside school gates so please, please continue to do that."

Councillor Ed Potter, Shropshire Council's cabinet member for children's services, said it was down to everyone to play their part in stopping the spread of the virus.

He urged people, including parents dropping children off at schools, to make sure they were following the rules.

He said: "The message to everyone is follow the rules. Follow the guidance and hopefully we will not have to go through what we are going through any longer than we have to.

"In order to avoid the full lockdown measures again we will all have to be strict in preventing that from happening.

"I desperately do not want to see schools closing again, and in order to do that if we as people have to be stricter about our own behaviour that will the price we have to pay."

Councillor Potter also paid tribute to the efforts of school staff over the past few months.

He said they had been "fantastic" while dealing with considerable pressure, and that he was proud of how they had handled the changes required.

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