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Covid-19 FAQ's for Schools

Our most Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19.

Updated: 05/05/2021

Thankfully the full re-opening of schools has been a big success, despite the challenges, which is a great credit to all the school leaders, staff and Boards of Management. COVID-19 still plays a dominating role in all our lives at present and we need to be very mindful of its potential impact.  We all have a responsibility to continue the fight against it. 

Over the last few months, we have seen a return to what we would consider normal school activity queries. However, the shadow of COVID-19 and its considerations still play a major role in most queries. We have updated our FAQ’s below in light of the regular queries we are receiving. 

As always, we are here to support and assist you. If you have any queries please feel free to contact our School Support Team, your Local Allianz School Representative or your insurance intermediary. You will find Allianz contact details at the end of the FAQ’s.

Please bear in mind that public health and government guidelines will always take precedence over our advice below and must be followed as and when they are introduced.

  • Bouncy castles and other such inflatables have inherent risks associated with them that, even in normal times, Allianz would strongly encourage schools to reconsider their appropriateness for school activities. 
  • However, as we all know, these are not normal times and there are even greater risks to be considered. Maintaining social distancing cannot be controlled when using such inflatables and the nature of the exercise will greatly increase the risk of “droplet infection”. Using such inflatables in the current environment would raise serious questions over whether or not a school is complying with COVID-19 guidelines and as such we would strongly discourage their use.
  • Yes, school sports days are seen as a school activity and are therefore covered as standard by your Allianz Custodian School Protection Policy.
  • In the current circumstances, the school must continue to be conscious of the government guidelines and advice from their management bodies, and as always the school must decide on the appropriateness of the activities for the pupils & school.
  • A risk assessment should be completed in advance of a sports day and its activities, including but not limited to ensuring there are adequate COVID-19 procedures in place.  School management must be satisfied that the school can safely cater for all participating pupils and staff before deciding to proceed.
Yes, school graduations are considered a school activity so this is covered under your Allianz Custodian School Protection Policy. However schools need to be aware of public health guidelines and take all necessary steps to adhere to them. This may include not allowing parents to attend due to potential restrictions on gatherings. We understand the Department of Education & Skills will issue guidance in relation to this topic in the coming weeks and we recommend that all schools follow these guidelines.

    If a camp is being run by the teacher(s), not under the control/direction of the board of management and for their own financial benefit, then it is not deemed to be a school related activity. In this situation, the teachers must be treated like all other third party users of school facilities. The onus is on the teacher(s) as a third party to ensure COVID-19 guidelines are adhered to. They must also:  (a) provide a letter of indemnity to the school showing they have their own insurance policy in place. (b) provide confirmation that they have their own child safeguarding procedures in place (the school should not seek a copy of these procedures) (c) sign a license agreement with the school.

    If a camp is being run by, and under the control and supervision of the board of management of the school, the Allianz Custodian School Protection policy can be extended and an additional premium will be charged. Camps are specifically excluded from your Allianz Custodian School Protection policy, so there would be no cover should the school proceed without confirmation of the cover extension. Schools should liaise with their local Allianz representative or their appointed insurance intermediary in order to confirm cover is in place before proceeding with any camp.

Yes, school tours are seen as a school activity and therefore covered as standard by your Allianz Custodian School Protection policy.

 In the current circumstances, the school must continue to be conscious of the government guidelines and advice from their management bodies, and as always the school must decide on the appropriateness of the school tour destination. A risk assessment should be completed in advance of any tour as well as procedures for adhering to all necessary guidelines whilst travelling to, from and on the tour itself.  School management must be satisfied that the school can safely cater for the pupils and staff on the tour.

As with all matters regarding COVID-19, Allianz have asked schools to follow the government guidelines and the advice of their management bodies. The general advice at present in relation to pregnant staff members is that :

  • Pregnant staff wishing to return to the school should be referred to their own medical practitioner for advice: (a) If the advice is not to return, then this should be adhered too. (b) If the advice is they can return, then the school should refer the staff member to Medmark for certification & sign off. (c) If appropriate to return then the school should complete & document a risk assessment
  • Schools should not be pro-actively asking pregnant staff members to return to school if short staffed

Your schools board of management are responsible for setting your sums insured and for an accurate assessment we recommend a professional valuation is obtained from a chartered quantity surveyor. Allianz can assist in providing an indicative sums insured assessment for your school using our internal valuation tool. It is important to point out that this is not a professional valuation but will provide an indication to inform your board of management’s decision when setting the sum insured. 

When appropriate to do so, your local Allianz representative can visit your school to provide this service free of charge. 

Underinsurance of your buildings and contents may result in the average clause being applied to a claim . In practice this means that, in simple terms, if your sums insured are set less than 75% of the actual rebuilding/replacement cost then any claim payment may be proportionately reduced. Please contact your local Allianz representative or your insurance intermediary for advice to ensure this situation does not arise.

Yes there may be various insurance implications regarding grants, and we ask you to liaise with your local Allianz representative or insurance intermediary as early as possible.

The grant conditions may require the new facility to be open to the public, something which your Allianz Custodian School Protection policy is not intended to indemnify as it is not a school activity. Furthermore, some grant applications are made in conjunction with local groups and therefore there is added consideration required. Schools should also bear in mind the importance of complying with the departments guidelines regarding third party users of school facilities. We are happy to discuss any applications you currently have or intend pursuing.

Trespassing has increased considerably during the restrictions. While the trespassing may not be sinister in nature and may simply seem like locals using facilities and playgrounds, you should bear in mind that it is bringing increased exposure to your school. Property Owners still owe a duty of care to trespassers therefore any trespasser injured on the school premises could take a legal action against the school.

There are some simple steps your school can take to discourage such activity. We recommend 

  • Erecting signage highlighting the school is private property & trespassing is prohibited and that trespassers will be prosecuted. Sample disclaimer wordings can be found under the resources section of our website Allianz.ie/schools
  • Issue timely reminders to all pupils/parents that the school grounds should not be accessed outside of school hours e.g. around mid-term breaks and summer holidays when there is increased incidents
  • Ensure gates and other access points to school grounds are kept locked outside of school hours
  • Liaise with local Gardai to patrol the area occasionally if the issue persists

 

Trespassing has increased considerably during the restrictions. While the trespassing may not be sinister in nature and may simply seem like locals using facilities and playgrounds, you should bear in mind that it is bringing increased exposure to your school. Property Owners still owe a duty of care to trespassers therefore any trespasser injured on the school premises could take a legal action against the school.

There are some simple steps your school can take to discourage such activity. We recommend 

  • Erecting signage highlighting the school is private property & trespassing is prohibited and that trespassers will be prosecuted. Sample disclaimer wordings can be found under the resources section of our website Allianz.ie/schools
  • Issue timely reminders to all pupils/parents that the school grounds should not be accessed outside of school hours e.g. around mid-term breaks and summer holidays when there is increased incidents
  • Ensure gates and other access points to school grounds are kept locked outside of school hours
  • Liaise with local Gardai to patrol the area occasionally if the issue persists

 

Your local Allianz School Representative will continue to be available to assist you by phone and email, click HERE for details.

In addition to this, your Local Allianz School Representative will be available to drop into your School virtually and can carry out some of our usual services remotely! Please liaise directly with your local Allianz representative for more details and to arrange.  This is a temporary measure while our local representatives are not in a position to visit your school. It is not designed to replace our local service visits which will be back up and running as soon as it is appropriate to do so. 

    Our Schools Support Team can be contacted at 01 613 3966 or EDUCATION@ALLIANZ.IE

    Our Property Damage Claim Team can be contacted at 01 613 3377 or PROPERTYDAMAGE@ALLIANZ.IE

    Our Liability Claims Team will be contactable by email only, PERSONALINJURY9@ALLIANZ.IE and will operate a call back service. If you would like to speak to one of our liability claims handlers, please advise clearly in the email if you request a call back.

    If your School is insured through an insurance broker, please contact them for any assistance. 

Calls may be recorded.