As you will probably already be aware, the restrictions that schools have been asked to put into place have changed for the autumn term 2021 onwards. This is because the government’s response to the pandemic is now moving away from stringent restrictions towards advising people on how to protect themselves and others, alongside targeted interventions to reduce risk.
All adults have been offered a vaccine and children who have direct clinical risks will have had the opportunity for two doses of vaccine by mid-September.
The key messages from the government for school are now;
- nationally, education and childcare settings are open, and attendance is mandatory (for schools) and strongly encouraged (at childminders, nurseries and colleges
- the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health has made it clear that the overwhelming majority of children and young people still have no symptoms or very mild illness only
- continuing to take regular rapid tests will help you to identify infections early and reduce transmission
- your nursery, school or college will no longer trace close contacts - close contacts will still be identified via NHS Test and Trace
- children and young people aged under 18 years 6 months who usually attend school, and have been identified as a close contact should continue to attend school as normal
- your child does not need to remain in a consistent group (‘bubble’)
- the government is removing the requirement to wear face coverings in law but expects and recommends that they are worn in enclosed and crowded spaces where you may come into contact with people you don’t normally meet
You can find further information about what parents and carers need to know for the autumn term here.
You may also find these NHS booklets for parents and carers helpful as they answer many common questions about Covid and schools.
If your child tests positive for Covid-19 and/or has symptoms then they should not come to school and should self-isolate. This link will tell you exactly what you need to do in this circumstance.
You need to inform the academy of any of the following as soon as possible:
- Your child has symptoms of Covid-19 and you are arranging a PCR test (self-isolate)
- Your child has had a positive LFD test and you are arranging a PCR test (self-isolate)
- Someone else in the same household has recently had a positive PCR test (come to school if no symptoms)
- Your child has been admitted to hospital with Covid-19
- Your child is required to self-isolate by NHS Track & Trace or because they are quarantining after returning to the country from a ‘red list’ area
If your child is unable to attend school for reasons related to Covid-19 then we will ensure the following arrangements are put into place as quickly as possible:
- Daily telephone welfare and academic progress check
- Loan of IT equipment if assessed as needing this to support remote learning
- Remote learning plan and resources
- Provision of free lunch or suitable alternative if your child is eligible for free school meals (does not include children eligible for universal free school meals because they are in KS1)