You may already be aware that the government made several announcements as part of their ‘Living with Covid-19’ plan which will lead to some important changes in how secondary schools have been operating with the virus over recent weeks and months. Please find below a summary of the key changes:
Changes to testing in mainstream secondary education settings
From Monday 21 February, the Government has removed the guidance for students in mainstream secondary education settings to undertake twice-weekly asymptomatic testing. Consequently, we are no longer able to provide home testing kits, however, the government have advised that students are able to access test kits from their local pharmacy or online.
Changes to self-isolation and daily testing of close contacts
From Thursday 24 February, the Government will remove the legal requirement to self-isolate following a positive test. However, adults and children who test positive will continue to be advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for at least 5 full days, and then continue to follow the guidance until they have received 2 negative test results on consecutive days.
In addition, the Government will:
• No longer ask fully vaccinated close contacts and those aged under 18 to test daily for 7 days, and remove the legal requirement for close contacts who are not fully vaccinated to self-isolate.
• End routine contact tracing. Contacts will no longer be required to self-isolate or advised to take daily tests. Children and young people should attend their education settings as usual.
• End the legal obligation for individuals to tell their employers when they are required to self-isolate.
Despite it no longer being a legal requirement, we feel it is important to follow the government advice for students to test if they are symptomatic and continue to follow the guidance of isolating for 5 days and follow the guidance until they have received 2 negative tests on consecutive days.
If you have any questions regarding any of the above changes please contact Mr Dakers, Assistant Principal, at the school.