Updated COVID guidance - November 2021
29 November 2021
I write to advise you of the updated guidance issued yesterday by the DfE, further to the temporary introduction of new measures announced by the Prime Minister over the weekend.
The new measures have been introduced in response to the Omicron variant.
These measures are precautionary, while the variant is tracked and assessed.
The new measures for schools are as follows:
• Face Coverings
Face coverings should be worn by pupils, staff and adult visitors when moving around the premises, outside of classrooms, such as in corridors and communal areas.
Secondary pupils should also continue to wear face coverings on public and school transport, but face coverings are not required in classrooms or outdoors.
Pupils should bring their own face masks to wear in school. We also ask parents to be appreciative of the fact that this is government advice, and whilst this is a strong recommendation, it is not mandatory.
• Isolation of close contacts of positive cases of Omicron
The current guidance on contact tracing and isolation remains unchanged.
However, in addition, any suspected or confirmed close contacts of the Omicron variant will be asked to isolate for 10 days regardless of vaccination status or age. They will also be asked to book a PCR test.
Schools are not expected to undertake contact tracing, with NHS Test and Trace identifying positive cases.
Individuals will be contacted directly and told to isolate.
This advice remains subject to change as the situation develops.
Covid Testing of Pupils in College
Schools have been asked to test pupils once on their return to school after the Christmas break. We await further guidance on this, but our plan currently is as follows:
Thursday 6 January 2022: Years 7 & 11 return to school
Friday 7 January 2022: Years 8, 9 & 10 return to school
Pupils should arrive at the usual start time on the allocated day stated above. Pupils will then be tested over the course of the day. Any positive cases will be notified to parents immediately. Confirmation and further details will follow in due course.
We continue to encourage pupils to test at home twice a week, and home test kits are available from College.
Please see the following link for further advice and information regarding Covid-19:
Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance and support - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
As always, we will endeavour to keep you fully informed.
Mrs K Scott
Director of Support Services