In this section of the website you will find information relating to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Across the trust we have ensured that we have put in place additional measures to ensure the safety of our pupils and staff please take a look across our COVID-19 Frequently asked Questions to find further details of these measures and answers to the questions that you may have.
What are the latest National Lockdown Restrictions?
We are currently at ‘Step 4’ of the government’s response to the pandemic, moving away from strict restrictions on day-to-day lives, towards advising people on how to best protect themselves and others.
What is Lateral Flow Testing (LFT) and what has been done to introduce Lateral Flow testing within our trust?
- Lateral flow testing is a fast and simple way to test people who do not have symptoms of COVID-19, but who may still be spreading the virus. Testing remains important in reducing the risk of transmission of infection within schools.
- Our Secondary provisions will retain a small asymptomatic testing site (ATS) on-site until further notice so they can offer testing twice weekly to pupils who are unable to test themselves at home.
- There is no need for primary age pupils (those in year 6 and below) to test.
- Staff are required to test twice weekly from home and report any positive result to the Trust Team.
Where can I go to get support to help keep my child safe online?
There are many sites containing lots of information, here are some that you may find useful:
What is the latest advice on isolation periods?
If you test positive, your self-isolation period includes the day your symptoms started (or the day you had the test, if you did not have symptoms) and the next 10 full days.
You may need to self-isolate for longer if you get symptoms while self-isolating or your symptoms do not go away.
Read more about how long to self-isolate.
Self-isolation rules have changed. You will not need to self-isolate in certain situations, for instance:
If someone you live with has symptoms of COVID-19, or has tested positive for COVID-19, you will not need to self-isolate if any of the following apply:
- you're fully vaccinated – this means 14 days have passed since your final dose of a COVID-19 vaccine given by the NHS
- you're under 18 years, 6 months old
- you're taking part or have taken part in a COVID-19 vaccine trial
- you're not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons
It's a legal requirement to self-isolate if you are told to by NHS Test and Trace. You could be fined if you do not self-isolate.
What is the school doing to limit possible infection?
The Trust will continue to implement a rigorous cleaning plan.
Regular handwashing by staff and children will continue.
Start and departure times are managed to avoid congestion around all schools and number of entrances and exits used are maximised where possible.
Different entrances/exits are used for different groups where practical and possible
All rooms are ventilated
All visitors are encouraged to wear face masks and Lateral Flow Test before visiting.
What additional cleaning measures have been introduced within the school?
- Rigorous cleaning is provided every day.
- Working hours for cleaning staff have been adjusted or additional cleaning duties planned to ensure a cleaner is onsite throughout the day.
- Hand soap and hot water are readily available. If a sink is not nearby, hand sanitiser is provided.
- Fogging activities are carried out as per HSE guidance and a risk assessment communicated with all site staff.
Will cleaning personnel be provided with PPE?
PPE is available to all staff engaged in cleaning duties.
What if someone in my house tests positive?
The self-isolation advice for contacts of people with coronavirus (COVID-19) has changed to reduce the risk of spread to others.
Anyone aged 5 years and over who lives in the same household as someone with COVID-19 and who is not legally required to self-isolate is now strongly advised to take an LFD test every day for 7 days. If any of these LFD tests are positive they should self-isolate in order to protect other people. The public health advice for people with symptoms of, or a positive test result for COVID-19 remains the same for everyone.
COVID-19 infection rates are very high and the Omicron variant is spreading rapidly. It is important that we all take steps to reduce the spread of COVID-19 infection in the community to save lives and protect the NHS.
If you have COVID-19 symptoms you should stay at home and self-isolate immediately. You should arrange to have a PCR test as soon as possible. If this PCR test result is positive, you must continue to self-isolate.
If you do not have COVID-19 symptoms, but you have a positive PCR test result, you must stay at home and self-isolate.
If you live in the same household as someone with COVID-19 you are at significantly higher risk of becoming infected yourself.
If you have been vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine, you are less likely to become severely ill if you catch COVID-19. You are also less likely to spread COVID-19 to other people, but it is still possible for this to happen. Therefore:
- if you are aged 18 years 6 months or over and you are not fully vaccinated*, and you live in the same household as someone with COVID-19, you are legally required to stay at home and self-isolate
- if you are fully vaccinated or aged under 18 years and 6 months, and you live in the same household as someone with COVID-19, you are not legally required to self-isolate. However, you are strongly advised to take an LFD test every day for 7 days, and to self-isolate if any of these test results is positive
*You are fully vaccinated 14 days after having received two doses of an approved vaccine (such as Pfizer/BioNTech, AstraZeneca or Moderna/Spikevax) or one dose of the single-dose Janssen vaccine.
LFD tests are very good at identifying people who have high levels of coronavirus and are most likely to pass on infection to others, even if you do not have symptoms.
What is the organisation of teaching spaces?
Due to the change in Government Guidance, the use of PODs will be reintroduced. Therefore, teaching and learning will continue as normal within PODS.
What will happen if the teacher exhibits symptoms of COVID-19?
They will be asked to self-isolate immediately and arrange for a PCR test. If the test is negative they can return back to school, if not they will need to self-isolate in line with the government guidance.
- One safe place has been identified to deal with any pupil or staff displaying symptoms at each school.
- Appropriate PPE (face shield, face mask, plastic apron and latex gloves) is available for any staff member having to support a child or staff member showing symptoms.
- Testing protocol is known by staff and parents – this should be done as soon as possible with school immediately notified of outcome.
What happens if my child was tested positive for COVID-19?
If a pupil tests positive on a LFT, where possible they will arrange for a PCR test. If the test is negative they can return back to school, if not they will need to self-isolate in line with the government guidance.
If my child must self-isolate, will the school provide home-learning resources?
Yes, home learning resources will be available.
When can someone return to school after self-isolating?
On completion of the 10-day isolation period providing symptoms are no longer experienced.
What will be done if there is an outbreak at the school?
If any of our schools have two or more confirmed cases within 10 days, we will follow our Covid Outbreak Management Plan and work with the local health protection team who will be able to advise if additional action is required.
Do staff and children need to wear face coverings?
Face masks are mandatory in all communal areas for all staff and pupils in secondary and post 16 settings unless exempt.
As a reminder - Symptoms of COVID 19
The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:
- new continuous cough and/or
- high temperature and/or
- a loss of, or change in, normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)
For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness.
If your child does develop symptoms, you can seek advice from NHS 111 at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/check-if-you-have-coronavirus-symptoms/or by phoning 111.
How to stop COVID-19 spreading
There are things you can do to help reduce the risk of you and anyone you live with getting ill with COVID-19.
- wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
- use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
- wash your hands as soon as you get home
- cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
- put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
Further information is available from here
On request a full copy of our trust COVID-19 Risk Assessment can be provided.