Dear parents/carers

I hope that you and your families are well and have enjoyed a restful and safe summer holiday. I am writing to share some important information with you about the start of the new term.  

Lateral flow testing on site

Government guidance states that testing remains important in reducing the risk of transmission of infection within schools and that all secondary school age pupils (year 7 and above) should have two lateral flow tests on return to school in September.  

On site testing will take place on the first day of school – Thursday 2nd September and then again four days later on Monday 6th September.  Testing will take place in classes and students will be supervised and supported by staff at all times during testing.  Results will be shared directly with the parent/carer and the pupil, formal notification will also be sent via the NHS system. 

Consent for testing on site

In order for your child to be tested on site at school, consent is required.  If consent has been given previously for the testing that took place in March 2021, then unless we hear further from you this consent will remain valid in accordance with government guidelines and no further action is necessary. If your child has started at Educational Diversity after March 2021 or you have not previously given consent and you would like your child to be tested, please complete the consent form by clicking here https://forms.gle/EyifRxGgsL8HdXQ78 .  Testing is voluntary however it is strongly encouraged.

Lateral flow testing at home

The government guidance still recommends that students and staff continue to complete two home lateral flow tests every week at least until the end of September when the government will review this.  Students will be issued with home testing kits after the second on site lateral flow test on Monday 6th September.  Please can parents/carers ensure that any positive test results are reported immediately to the school and the NHS.  

Contact tracing 

The government no longer requires schools to conduct routine contact tracing. The NHS Test and Trace will work with parents/carers of the positive case to identify close contacts. 

 

  1. If your child has a positive PCR test result, NHS Test and Trace will contact you, using the details you registered when ordering the PCR test. You and/or your child will be asked a series of specific questions designed to identify who your child has been in close contact with. 
  2. You will be asked to provide the contact details, if you know them, of any of the individuals – or their parents/ carers – who have been identified as close contacts. NHS Test and Trace will then get in touch with the close contacts and provide appropriate instructions or advice.  

Self isolation

Scenario 1- For close contacts of a positive case:

Pupils are no longer required to self-isolate if they live in the same household as someone with COVID-19, or are a close contact of someone with COVID-19. Instead, their parent/ carer will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace, informed they have been in close contact with a positive case and advised to take a PCR test. We encourage all pupils to take a PCR test if advised to do so.

Whilst waiting for the result of the PRC test, pupils are expected to attend school as normal. If the PCR test is positive, they will be required to self-isolate for 10 days from the date of the test. NHS Test and Trace will then get in touch to identify their close contacts. 

Scenario 2- For those with a Positive LFD test result:

Pupils are required to self isolate. Pupils should arrange to have a PCR test and self isolate until they receive a test result, and follow the guidance given with their PCR test result. 

Scenario 3- For those with symptoms of COVID-19:

Pupils are required to self isolate. Pupils should arrange to have a PCR test and self isolate until they receive a test result, and follow the guidance given with their PCR test result.

Further guidance on self-isolation is available below on the government website. 

Guidance for contacts of people with possible or confirmed COVID 19 infection who do not live with the person 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-for-contacts-of-people-with-possible-or-confirmed-coronavirus-covid-19-infection-who-do-not-live-with-the-person/guidance-for-contacts-of-people-with-possible-or-confirmed-coronavirus-covid-19-infection-who-do-not-live-with-the-person

Guidance for households with possible or confirmed case of COVID 19 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

COVID 19 symptoms 

Please remember that guidelines from September remain the same for those people who are displaying symptoms of COVID 19.  If your child is displaying COVID 19 symptoms, please ensure they remain at home in isolation and take a PCR test.  Please also let the school know. 

 

The main symptoms of COVID-19 are:

  • a high temperature
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot, for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
  • a loss or change to sense of smell or taste – this means they cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
  • More information about symptoms is available on the NHS website – https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/symptoms/coronavirus-in-children/

Face coverings

We continue to encourage the wearing of face coverings for students, staff and visitors in enclosed and crowded spaces. However we respect that students, staff and visitors may be exempt from the wearing of face coverings, or they may choose not to wear face coverings.  We will follow government and local guidance on the wearing of face coverings in the event of a significant outbreak in the school setting.  

Teaching and learning

Students will no longer be organised within bubbles, this will mean more flexibility for curriculum delivery, assemblies can resume and we will review arrangements for lunchtimes. It may be the case that, in the event of a significant outbreak, ‘bubbles’ within schools will be recommended. We will follow government and local guidance on this matter.  

The new government guidance means that as a school we can return much closer to operating as ‘normal’ in September.  This will help to reduce the disruption to our children’s education, but as always our priority is to keep our students, staff and wider community as safe as possible so we will be continuing to implement the additional health and safety measures and continue to update our risk assessments to ensure we have contingency planning and risk management in place.  

 

More information for parents/carers about school guidance on re-opening is available at https://educationhub.blog.gov.uk/2021/07/06/parents-pupils-teachers-and-students-find-out-what-step-4-of-the-covid-roadmap-means-for-you/

 

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the school your child attends.  We look forward to welcoming your child back after the summer holidays on Thursday 2nd September at the normal time.  

 

Yours faithfully