As we finish for the summer break I want to remind you of key contact information for the holiday period and let you know the expected changes in school from September.
In line with track and trace requirements if your child tests positive for COVID, up to and including Wednesday 21st July 2021 then please contact me on 07930873393 or email@example.com so I can inform close contacts who would need to isolate. Also, please be aware that if your child is identified as a close contact until this date, I may need to contact you to inform you that your child needs to isolate.
Whilst the school is physically closed during the holiday period there are staff available to support if needed if you have any safeguarding concerns. Again, if needed please contact me on 07930873393.
As you will have seen in the media recently there is a hope that schools can return to operating in a more normal way from September. I have outlined the key changes below for your information. Please note that these are subject to change depending on the national guidance or local restrictions at the time of return in September.
1. Bubbles are gone…
From 19th July 2021, bubbles will be popped. That means there will be no bubbles for school from September.
Ditching bubbles means assemblies can resume and no need to avoid mixing at lunch.
2. …but they could come back in some areas
Schools have been told to “make sure” outbreak plans “cover the possibility that in some local areas it may become necessary to reintroduce ‘bubbles’ for a temporary period, to reduce mixing between groups”.
Such a decision would “not be taken lightly”.
3. No more contact tracing for schools
From 16th August 2021, children will no longer have to isolate if they are a COVID close contact.
Contacts from school will “only be traced by NHS Test and Trace where the positive case specifically identifies the individual as being a close contact”.
“This is likely to be a small number of individuals who would be most at risk of contracting COVID-19 due to the nature of the close contact. You may be contacted in exceptional cases to help with identifying close contacts, as currently happens in managing other infectious diseases.”
4. Face coverings gone
From 19th July 2021, face coverings will no longer be advised for students, staff or visitors in either the classroom of communal areas. Face coverings will continue to be recommended on dedicated school transport.
However, public health officials may advise masks are worn again in the case of local outbreaks.
5. On-site testing is back
The DfE says as children will be mixing during the summer holidays, all secondary students “should” (note: not mandatory) receive two on-site lateral flow tests, three to five days apart, on their return in September”. Our plan will be to tests students who we have received consent for on Thursday 2nd September and Monday 6th September.
6. Negative PCR tests will override rapid result
Staff and students with a positive rapid test will isolate and will need to take a more accurate PCR test.
If taken within two days, a negative PCR test will over-ride the rapid result meaning staff and students can return to school.
I feel I must add that this is all correct at the time of writing and if there are any major updates during the summer then I will contact you all before we return.
Have a great summer.