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How do 'bubbles' work for teenagers?

(38 Posts)
LasagneQueen Wed 19-Aug-20 22:29:17

DD turns 16 next month.

She has a dozen friends she'd like to invite round for a 'party' and honestly I'm a bit flummoxed.

I think I'm correct in believing that only 6 people are allowed to meet at a home/private garden, yet she will be in a 'bubble' with all of these girls at school so don't really see what the difference is between them being in a contained classroom together all week, or being in my garden at the weekend.

We'll have the gazebo up so they will be in the garden regardless of weather, in and out only to use the loo, I'll put a bottle of hand sanitiser on the back door and paper towels in the bathroom. Food and drinks will all be individually served rather than buffet style.

Would you be happy for your DC to attend something like this? I'm not naturally a rule breaker and quite honestly I've got enough stress in my life at the moment without worrying about all this, but want her to have a decent birthday.

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LasagneQueen Wed 19-Aug-20 23:55:28

Bump

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AlexaShutUp Thu 20-Aug-20 00:08:26

Honestly speaking, no, I wouldn't really be happy about it, but I would probably cave in if everyone else was going, would worry about it lots and silently curse the parents for putting me in that position.

Tbh, this is one of the things that I'm really dreading about dd (also year 11) going back to school. On the one hand, I do understand the logic that they're all mixing in school anyway, but on the other hand I'm frustrated by the fact that this will just encourage people to abandon all attempts at social distancing outside school.

I'm in a vulnerable category, so do have concerns. Of course, I could just say no to dd, but her friends mean the world to her and I would not want to exclude her from everything that they are doing, so I just have to accept the risk.

Not a criticism of anyone, as we are all coming at this from different perspectives, but it's very hard for more vulnerable families when other parents are so relaxed about the whole thing.

ineedaholidaynow Thu 20-Aug-20 00:13:53

A number of students are off school in Scotland after testing positive supposedly after having a house party. Any student that sat near these students at school are also off as they are treated as contacts.

Students won’t get it at school unless someone brings the virus into school (although the Government seem to believe schools have magic powers that prevent the virus transmitting in schools!)

LasagneQueen Thu 20-Aug-20 00:22:04

Alexa I totally get where you're coming from.

I have elderly parents who I've been helping to care for/support since lockdown and am asthmatic myself. However I'm a key worker (at DDs school) so will have no choice but to hurl myself back into it all anyway, with the potential risks.

It's very difficult to say 'no' when they will have all been together 5/7 days a week for the fortnight leading up to her birthday, but I'm really not that comfortable with it either.

More because I don't want to make anyone else feel uncomfortable/piss them off tbh.

If we did do it, we'd be very clear on what was planned so anyone uncomfortable could steer clear.

My idea was to have an open house and stagger when people came so we don't have them all here at once.

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Hearhoovesthinkzebras Thu 20-Aug-20 00:26:07

Can you just imagine having to explain to school (your employer) that you allowed a party that is the source of an outbreak at school? That's the possibility and if someone at the party tests positive track and trace would know how it happened and would be talking to school if the girls had been to school during the incubation period. It's happened in Scotland.

LasagneQueen Thu 20-Aug-20 00:32:04

Yep exactly.

I'm going to have to think of an alternative aren't I?

I know it's the right thing to do but we've had such a monumentally shitty year and she's had friendship issues predating lockdown, it's so shit.

What's the verdict of staggering it so we have no more than 6 in the garden at a time?

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AlexaShutUp Thu 20-Aug-20 00:33:43

It's very difficult to say 'no' when they will have all been together 5/7 days a week for the fortnight leading up to her birthday, but I'm really not that comfortable with it either.

Yeah, I totally get it. That's what would make it hard for me to say no to dd if she wanted to go. Social distancing outside school will seem pointless to them when they're in close proximity in school all day. And it's been hard for the kids through lockdown, you do want them to have some fun.

FWIW, I wouldn't really blame another parent for making the decision to do this. I would just feel really stressed and worried about it. Having said that, I'm already stressed about schools re-opening anyway. Must be hard knowing that you have to go back into that environment.

I hope your dd has a lovely birthday, whatever you eventually decide to do.

LasagneQueen Thu 20-Aug-20 00:36:28

I'm wondering about doing something like this:

4-6 Abc
5-7 abc/def
6-8 def/ghi
7-9 ghi/jkl

We'll just have to pick names out of a hat for who gets invited when.

Either that or have half Friday night and half Saturday afternoon.

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walksen Thu 20-Aug-20 00:36:55

"so don't really see what the difference is between them being in a contained classroom together all week, or being in my garden at the weekend."

One is currently legal, the other isn't.

Lots of areas in greater Manchester can't have visitors at all because these kind of events cause outbreaks. You can't honestly expect that teenagers will observe SD and are far more likely to be hugging each other etc than at school. How realistic is it that you will end up actually have a rolling rota of 6 friends in the garden? I daresay this is not how it will turn out.

As a pp has pointed out there have been outbreaks in Scotland due to similar events with classmates etc and households having to self isolate. No doubt parents at these events did their own risk assessments....

AlexaShutUp Thu 20-Aug-20 00:37:36

Staggering would definitely be better. 6 in the garden with social distancing and separate food sounds ok to me. How big is the gazebo? Would they be able to keep their distance, and are dd's friends the type to try and remember this?

LasagneQueen Thu 20-Aug-20 01:06:24

Gazebo is 3 x 6m, unless it's tipping down I'll have it open sided.

Will tell DD it will have to be either staggered or a two-night thing...can't wait hmm, although anything will be better than the mixed group of 30 odd that we had last year!

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BlueBirdGreenFence Thu 20-Aug-20 01:09:02

Staggering is one of those ideas that sounds great in theory but is never going to work in practice. Are you kicking each group out as the other arrives or having a changeover where they're all there at once? I think you know it's not the right thing to be doing.

LasagneQueen Thu 20-Aug-20 01:09:40

Doing individual pizzas, bags of crisps rather than sharing bowls, no dips. Sweets and chocs in wrappers and canned drinks with paper straws.

Anti bac all over the place, paper towels in the bathroom so they don't have to share the proper ones.

They can enter directly into the garden and only need to come in if the need the loo.

What a palaver!

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LasagneQueen Thu 20-Aug-20 01:11:07

They are all sensible kids with sensible parents. I'm confident timescales won't be an issue.

May do it over 2 days anyway which would eliminate that issue.

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SaltyAndFresh Thu 20-Aug-20 01:17:39

Presumably your DD's bubble will be 200+, depending on the size of her year group, so I don't think that's got too much bearing on the number invited. I'm a teacher and I'm at max risk anyway, so it wouldn't make any difference to me if the same kids got together for a party. They won't be SDing in school so what's the point?

LasagneQueen Thu 20-Aug-20 01:24:35

Salty exactly...year group bubble in the region of 280...all the girls in her year/classes/form.

This is what makes it so bloody difficult, compounded by the fact I work at the school and live next door to a police officer.

I think the acronym I'm looking for is FML!

I can't be only parent that, even putting Covid aside, dreads my DD's birthday more every year.

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ineedaholidaynow Thu 20-Aug-20 07:12:12

If you are going to put the sides down on the gazebo you may as well be indoors.

BillywilliamV Thu 20-Aug-20 07:14:20

8 new cases out of every 100, 000 people at the moment, I think an outside party will be okay!

yomellamoHelly Thu 20-Aug-20 07:17:22

My thought is that in 10 days time school kicks off. They'll be in huge bubbles of 200-odd kids plus teachers (never mind the contact with other bubbles those teachers have had) and there won't be any social distancing within those bubbles. Therefore I'd let them have their 'party' (but avoid them all myself). The government would have you believe they don't spread COVID anyway.

ineedaholidaynow Thu 20-Aug-20 07:28:15

I would hate to be the person responsible for bursting a bubble at school, it would be like giving everyone food poisoning at a party, but worse.

WeAllHaveWings Thu 20-Aug-20 07:32:46

Look at the school outbreaks in Scotland, they are not school transmissions they are community transmissions linked to house parties because parents decided they were back at school anyway so why not.

Children being back in school and education is essential, it is a risk but they are trying to reduce the risk as much as possible.

Desks are being wiped down after every class
Hand sanitising between every class
Pupils are being kept in year groups and breaks staggered
Toilets are being regularly cleaned throughout the day and very limited how many pupils are allowed in at a time
Lunches are in classrooms, preordered and delivered to the class
Teachers are guarding school exits at lunchtime to ensure pupils dont leave school
Pupils take into school the bare minimum and share nothing

Can you just imagine having to explain to school (your employer) that you allowed a party that is the source of an outbreak at school?

Forget having to explain to school, can you imagine hearing your party was a source of an outbreak at school and a child, or a child's parent was seriously ill from it?

Parties are not essential. It is the wrong thing to do.

Dotinthecity Thu 20-Aug-20 07:32:51

I can’t see any reason why they can’t have an outdoor gathering. I think you’re worrying unnecessarily. As another poster has said, the number of cases versus the size of our population is minuscule. They’re all going back to school shortly and will be together then. Think about it, it will be fine. 😁

Hearhoovesthinkzebras Thu 20-Aug-20 07:50:03

Dotinthecity

I can’t see any reason why they can’t have an outdoor gathering. I think you’re worrying unnecessarily. As another poster has said, the number of cases versus the size of our population is minuscule. They’re all going back to school shortly and will be together then. Think about it, it will be fine. 😁

Well it wasn't fine for the party in Scotland. How would ops employer react if she has to go into quarantine because someone at the party then tests positive? I can just imagine that conversation "sorry employer I'll be off for 14 days quarantining" " oh goodness. How were you in contact with the infected person?" "Oh, I let my daughter have an illegal birthday party and one of the guests tested positive. By the way, track and trace are going to contact you because the girls at the party, and me, have all been in school so some of the bubble and other staff will need to quarantine too" - yeah, that will be an interesting conversation.

KeyWorker Thu 20-Aug-20 08:13:03

The thing with your abc/def plan is that you daughter is A and anyone else in the household is counted to, it’s 6 in total not 6 additional people. So if you are supervising you are counted. So dd is 1, you are 2, then 4 friends rotating.

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