Monday 28th February 2022
RE: Covid-19 Rules Update
Last week the government issued new guidance and plans regarding Covid procedures. The full document can be found via this link Living with COVID-19. The emphasis from the government is now around living with Covid, in the same way as we live with countless other diseases that can cause ill health. Clearly there are many views in wider society around the plans announced by the government. As a school we want to move forward in a way that recognises the impact Covid can have, but also reflects the governments ambition to move to a new normal. From Thursday 24th February, in line with DfE guidance, we will be implementing the following:
1) Children need to attend school if they are well. There may be some individual situations which parents want to discuss with us, but the over-arching ambition is that children come to school if they are well enough.
2) Children should stay at home if they are unwell. If a child comes to school unwell or showing any of the three classic signs of Covid we will ask them to be taken home
3) It is still advised to take a PCR or LTF test if your child is showing Covid symptoms, then stay at home and avoid contact with other people.
4) The legal requirement to self-isolate following a positive test is removed. However staff and children who test positive will continue to be advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for at least 5 full days and then continue to follow the guidance until they have received 2 negative test results on consecutive days (free NHS tests will remain available until the end of March 2022).
5) There is no advice for children to take precautionary Covid tests: if they are well they attend school, if they are unwell they do not.
6) Close contacts who are fully vaccinated and those aged under-18 will no longer be asked to test daily for 7 days, and the legal requirement for close contacts who are not fully vaccinated to self-isolate will be removed.
7) From Monday 28th February we will no longer be setting work to complete at home if a child is off school. If they are off school they are unwell, and therefore not able to complete school work. Parents are free to set work from the National/Oak Academy website (https://www.thenational.academy/ ) if they so wish.
8) The guidance for staff in primary education settings to undertake twice weekly asymptomatic testing has been removed. Therefore we are not asking staff to take LFTs twice a week.
9) We will not be sending Covid-alert emails to parents/carers if a new Covid case arises in a class/year group.
10) We will still monitor school absence due to Covid for the time being.
11) If the number of cases rises then we will (i) take appropriate actions in school to reduce infection, (ii) if cases continue to rise we will consult our local Health Protection Team.
General advice from the government remains:
a) Get vaccinated (there is not yet any clear guidance re vaccinations for all children in England)
b) Let fresh air in if meeting indoors
c) Wear a face covering in crowded and enclosed spaces, especially where coming into contact with people you do not usually meet and when rates of transmission are high
d) Wash your hands and following advice to “Catch it, Bin it, Kill it”
We obviously need to see how the changes above affect the health of the children and staff. If we find that we need to review our procedures then we will do so. Parents and visitors are now welcome to come in to school at any time. Face masks are no longer required.
As always, if you have any questions please contact the school office for advice.