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COVID 14th January 2022 onwards

PLEASE NOTE: THE INFORMATION HERE IS AMALGAMATED FROM VARIOUS SOURCES AS AN AIDE-MEMOIRE FOR PARENTS / CARERSRELATING TO COVID ISSUES AFFECTING SCHOOL ATTENDANCE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE LATEST GUIDANCE FROM OFFICIAL GOV.UK WEBSITES AS CHANGES ARE FREQUENTLY MADE TO PROCEDURES AND THE SCHOOL CANNOT GUARANTEE THAT THIS INFORMATION IS CURRENT. Thank you

Contact tracing and self-isolation in education and childcare settings

As you may already know, education and childcare settings are no longer expected to conduct routine contact tracing. As with positive cases in any other setting, NHS Test and Trace will work with either the positive case – or in the case of children – the parents, carers or guardian of the positive case to identify close contacts.

NHS Test and Trace already manages the contact tracing process for the rest of society – including children who have recorded a positive PCR test – and has expertise in supporting people to identify close contacts.

This letter sets out in more detail below how that process will work and what you need to do if your child tests positive for COVID-19.

Changes to the self-isolation period for those who test positive for COVID-19

From Monday 17 January, people who are self-isolating with COVID-19 will have the option to reduce their isolation period after 5 full days if they test negative with a lateral flow device (LFD) test on both day 5 and day 6 and they do not have a temperature. For example, if they test negative on the morning of day 5 and the morning of day 6, they can return to their education or childcare setting immediately on day 6.

The first test must be taken no earlier than day 5 of the self-isolation period, and the second must be taken the following day. All test results should be reported to NHS Test and Trace.

If the result of either of their tests is positive, they should continue to self-isolate until they get negative results from two LFD tests on consecutive days or until they have completed 10 full days of self-isolation, whichever is earliest.

Anyone who is unable to take LFD tests or anyone who continues to have a temperature will need to complete the full 10 day period of self-isolation.

Further information on self-isolation for those with COVID-19 is available.

Daily testing for close contacts of COVID-19

Confirmatory PCR tests to be temporarily suspended for positive lateral flow device (LFD) test results

Confirmatory PCR tests following a positive lateral flow device (LFD) test result are to be temporarily suspended from Tuesday 11 January. This will mean that anyone who receives a positive LFD test result will be required to self-isolate immediately and will not be required to take a confirmatory PCR test.

You are only asked to take a follow up PCR test after a positive LFD test if you:

  • wish to claim the Test and Trace Support Payment
  • have been advised to take a PCR test because they are in a clinically vulnerable group
  • have been advised to do so as part of a research or surveillance programme
  • have received a positive day 2 LFD after arriving into the UK

If anyone has any of the main symptoms of COVID-19, they are strongly advised to take a PCR test, not an LFD test. If someone with symptoms has already taken an LFD test for any reason and the result is positive, they do not need to take a follow-up PCR test.

People who are fully vaccinated, or children and young people aged between 5 and 18 years and 6 months, identified as a close contact of someone with COVID-19, should take an LFD test every day for 5 full days- as above, and continue to attend their setting as normal, unless they have a positive test result or develop symptoms at any time.

Children under 5 are not being advised to take part in daily testing of close contacts. If a child under 5 is a contact of a confirmed case, they are not required to self-isolate and should not start daily testing. If they live in the same household as someone with COVID-19 they should limit their contact with anyone who is at higher risk of severe illness if infected with COVID-19, and arrange to take a PCR test as soon as possible. They can continue to attend an education or childcare setting while waiting for the PCR result. If the test is positive, they should follow the stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed COVID-19 infection.

For primary aged children LFD test kits are available through the usual routes (community test sites, local pharmacies or online).

Children under five years old do not need to take part in daily testing for contacts of COVID-19 and do not need to isolate.

Contact tracing

  • If your child gets 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. Being in an education or childcare setting with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 will not necessarily mean a person is identified as a close contact.
  • You will be asked to provide the contact details, if you know them, of any of the individuals – or their parents or guardians – who have been identified as close contacts. NHS Test and Trace will then get in touch with these close contacts and provide appropriate instructions or advice (see below).

You may be eligible for a Test and Trace support payment provided you meet the relevant criteria. Further information can be found at GOV.UK//test-and-trace-support-payment.

We recognise how difficult the past 20 months have been and the sacrifices that all families, education, and childcare settings have had to make. This has been an enormously challenging time for everyone, and we would like to take the opportunity to thank you for everything you have done.

It is important to note that COVID has not gone away; good-sense infection control measures will still apply and , of course, if your child displays COVID symptoms then the measures explained further on this page on isolation and testing will apply.

Should we experience any outbreaks at a local or national level, then of course some or all of these measures may need to be amended. Information on this will be given as and when the need arises.

Please find below some guidance we hope you will find useful.

Testing for Households with primary-age pupils

Find your nearest rapid lateral flow test site.

Collect test kits

You can collect 2 packs of home test kits at a local collection point. Each pack contains 7 tests.

Anyone 18 or over can collect. You can check online if the location is busy before you go.

Find your nearest home test kit collection point.

Order home test kits online

If you cannot get tested at your workplace, or are unable to go to a test site or collect test kits, you can order a home test kit online.

Do not order online if you can get a test through other methods. This frees up home delivery for those who need it most.

Order rapid lateral flow home test kits

Report your test result online or by calling 119.

Coronavirus Testing

For guidance on coronavirus testing, including who is eligible for a test and how to get tested please follow link:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested

Department for Transport travelling advice for parents and pupils

The Department for Transport has issued advice on how parents and pupils can travel to school safely as part of the #TravelSafely campaign. Resources have been developed to ensure that parents, pupils and staff have the information they need to stay safe on the public transport network. This includes information developed in collaboration with respected partners on how to cycle and walk safely, where possible.

Resources can be found here:

https://extranet.dft.gov.uk/safer-transport-campaign/schools/

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