Less than a month before the beginning of classes, which are due to start between 14 and 17 September, families still do not know what their children’s student life will be like.

“We know there will be a return to face-to-face education, which we welcome, but we do not know how the measures will be implemented, and we need to organise our lives and ensure that we manage to reconcile family life with our professional lives”, warned Jorge Ascenção, president of the National Federation Association of Parents (Confap).

According to Lusa news agency, School administrations have some autonomy in implementing measures they consider to be the best for their school community.

There are schools that will extend opening hours, others are designing schedules to concentrate classes in morning or afternoon shifts and there are also solutions that reduce interval times, according to information advanced to Lusa by representatives of school principals.

However, there will be few schools that have already communicated to the families what measures they are going to adopt, so the students still do not know if they will have to enter the school earlier or if they will have all free afternoons, said the president of Confap.

“There is still not much information and it is important that families are involved in this process, because this is not an exclusive problem for schools. These are measures that should be known to families so that they can organise themselves accordingly,” he said.

In the case of schools that opt for double schedules, “what will be the solution found for students who are not taking classes?” said Jorge Ascenção.

“We realise the complexity of preparing this school year, but it must be done in partnership with families. It is important that there is clearer and more precise communication”, he defended, regretting that the information is coming “little by little ”.

According to Jorge Ascenção, families fear possible contagions on their return to school, but there is a general perception that a new lockdown would have serious consequences for the psychological, emotional and physical health of children, as well as social and family issues.