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Latest of Covid-19 and Winter Illnesses

17th September 2021

 

Dear families,

Keeping Everyone Safe & in good health during Covid-19.

I am writing to advise you that there have been a small number of positive COVID-19 cases at the school.  Although this is concerning we would like to reassure you that we continue to monitor the situation and always take guidance from Public Health England.   Whilst Government guidelines are in place, we have to consider the vulnerability of our children and, at times, adapt our practices to keep them safe at all times.  This letter is just to make you aware of the current situation and to relay advice on how to support your child.  Please be reassured that for most people, COVID-19 will present as a mild illness.

 

The school remains open and we advise your child and other household members to continue to lateral flow test twice weekly.  This helps us to identify cases and act on them immediately.  If you think your child has been in close contact with anyone that has tested positive and you have not been contacted directly by NHS Test and Trace please follow the guidance here:

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

 

If your child develops symptoms of Covid-19, they should get a PCR test and remain at home until a result is returned.  Self-isolation can end if the result is negative but if the result is positive your child will be asked by NHS to isolate for at least 10 days after the symptoms appeared.  Symptoms can include any of the following:

  • New, continuous cough
  • High temperature
  • Loss of, or a change in, taste and smell

 If your child has a positive result but experiences no symptoms, they should stay home and self-isolate for 10 days from the date of the test.  This isolation period will be extended if they go on to develop symptoms by counting 10 full days from the day of the symptom onset. 

Anyone with symptoms will be eligible for a PCR test and this can be arranged by calling 119 or at https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test

 

The guidance outlined by the Government from 16th August 2021 states that you will NOT be require to self-isolate if you are in contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 if any of the following apply:

  • You are fully vaccinated
  • You are below the age of 18 years and 6 months
  • You have taken part in or are currently part of an approved Covid-19 vaccine trial;
  • You are not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons

Fully vaccinated means that you have been vaccinated with an MHRA approved Covid-19 vaccine in the UK, and at least 14 days have passed since you received the recommended doses of the vaccine.

 

NHS Test and Trace will contact you to let you know if you have been identified as a contact and check whether you are legally required to self-isolate.  If you are not legally required to self-isolate you will be given advice on testing and prevention of spread.

 

Household members who are not exempt from isolation should remain at home for 10 days.  You could be subject to a fine of you do not self-isolate when told to do so by Test and Trace.  You may be entitled to a one-off payment of £500 through the NHS Test and Trace Support Payment scheme if you are required to stay at home and self-isolate or are the parent or guardian of a child who has been told to self-isolate.

 

Those who are clinically extremely vulnerable should be supported to minimise their contact with other people in the household during this period, regardless whether others have symptoms or not. 

Even if you are vaccinated, you can still be infected with Covid-19 and pass it on to others.  If you are identified as a contact with someone with Covid-19 but you are not required to self-isolate, you can help protect others by following the guidance on how to stay safe and help prevent the spread.  As well as getting a PCR test, you may also consider:

  • Limiting close contact with other people outside of your household, especially in enclosed spaces;
  • Wearing a face covering for those aged 11 and over in crowded places such as school/college/public transport;
  • Limiting contact with anyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable;
  • Taking part in regular LFD testing.

If you are a health or social care worker or a student undertaking a work placement who has been identified as a household contact and are exempt from self-isolation, there is additional guidance that you should follow to reduce the risk of spreading Covid-19 in these settings.  If you develop symptoms at any time, even if they are mild, you must self-isolate immediately, arrange to have a Covid-19 PCR test and follow government guidance.

 

If your child does develop symptoms, you can seek advice from the nhs.uk website at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/check-if-you-have-coronavirus-symptoms/.  If you are concerned about your child’s symptoms, or they are worsening you can seek advice by calling 111.

There are things you can do to help reduce the risk of you or anyone you live with getting ill with Covid-19:

  • Get vaccinated – everyone aged over 16 and over can book Covid-19 vaccination appointments.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water and use hand sanitiser regularly throughout the day.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not hands) when you cough or sneeze.
  • Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash hands afterwards.
  • Meet people outside where possible and avoid crowded areas.
  • Open doors and windows to let in fresh air if meeting people inside. 
  • Wear a face covering if aged 11 or over when it’s hard to avoid close contact with other people.
  • Participate in twice weekly LFD testing following national guidelines (recommended for 11 years and over). 

Further information is available at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

 

Sickness and Diarrhoea

On a final note, it’s a good time to remind you about good hygiene practices seeing as the winter season is approaching.  We have already had a few cases of sickness and diarrhoea since the beginning of term, to help contain this, and to protect our staff and children, please be reminded that we request a minimum of 48 hours between your child’s last episode of sickness and/or diarrhoea before they return to school.  If your child was sent home before 12 noon with an upset tummy, they will only be able to return after lunch (1.10pm) after that 48 hour period.

 

Take care and stay safe

Donna Luck – Head Teacher

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