As we begin the 2nd full week back in school, I feel that I must, once again express heartfelt thanks to you all. Despite the fact that the measures that we are having to take to protect our community are inconvenient for us all, I have been extremely impressed by the can-do attitude of staff and parents alike.
The feedback from Public Health England is that, on the whole, children are not tending to spread the virus and are not being seriously affected. I found this reassuring. However, it is important to note that where there have been outbreaks it is usually through adult to adult contact. As this is the case, I feel it is worth just reminding parents and carers to do your best to maintain a distance between you when dropping off and picking up your children.
As there have been a number of questions about COVID-19 symptoms and what to do, I thought I would just write out a few key things that you need to know:
What are the Symptoms of COVID?
• a new continuous cough
• a high temperature
• a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)
Having just one of these symptoms could indicate a COVID infection.
What do I do if my child or any person in my home shows any of these symptoms?
• The person with the symptoms must stay at home to self-isolate for 10 days from the date their symptoms started.
• All other members of the household must stay at home to self-isolate for 14 days
• Immediately arrange to have a test for anyone who is actually displaying symptoms of COVID-19.
Should I arrange a test for anyone else in the household if they are not showing symptoms? No. Even if one person has tested positive, there is no point in anyone else getting tested unless they begin to show symptoms, at which time they would need to be tested.
How do I arrange a test?
• Arrange a test through the nhs.uk website. This can be accessed by clicking on this link https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test
• If you can’t access the internet you can ring 119 to book a test.
What do I do if no tests are available?
• Keep trying until you can book a test.
• All members of the household must self-isolate until receiving the test result
What if I am not sure if the symptoms are COVID or a cold?
• First check the list of symptoms above.
• If still unsure whether you or your child is experiencing COVID symptoms please feel ring 119 or your GP for advice.
• You MUST NOT come to school if you think you or any of your family may have COVID symptoms.
• If the test results are negative your child can return to school as soon as they are well enough
• If your child has self-isolated for 10 days following a positive test, they do not have to take another test to check if they are now negative. They will be able to return to school if well enough.
Will the school tell me if there is a child in the bubble who is self-isolating? No. This is because most people with suspected symptoms do not test positive for the virus. However, we will always inform you if there is a positive case that requires any action and we will always seek and follow the advice of the local Public Health Team when making decisions.
If I have a child in another bubble or school and they are sent home to self-isolate, Does the rest of my family have to self-isolate? No. Not unless any of your household actually show COVID symptoms.
I’m afraid this has been another quite lengthy letter but I have tried to answer all the questions we are being asked. I hope it has been helpful.
Although it is important to know what to do, please remember that instances of the virus are still low and most people who test positive experience only mild symptoms. Following all the measures we have put in place can only help reduce the risk.
Wishing you all continued good health
Mrs Jo Reid