Covid-19 Information

Please use this link to notify us of any symptoms or confirmed cases.

APRIL 1st 2022

LIVING WITH COVID – LATEST GOVERNMENT GUIDANCE

Over the Easter break, the government announced their ‘living with COVID’ strategy which has a direct impact on school attendance. Therefore, below is a COVID update with the latest guidance on how we can continue to live with COVID and promote excellent attendance.

Living With COVID – Latest Government Guidance

As I am sure you are aware, the universal testing offer ended on 1st April. There is no requirement for pupils or staff to test regularly.

The following guidance is now in place if pupils or staff are unwell with COVID symptoms:

  • Children and young people who are unwell and have a high temperature should stay at home and avoid contact with other people. They can go back to school when they no longer have a high temperature, and they feel well enough to attend.
  • Adults with the symptoms of a respiratory infection, and who have a high temperature or feel unwell, should try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people until they feel well enough to resume normal activities and they no longer have a high temperature.
  • In the event that a COVID test is taken:
    • Adults with a positive test result should try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 5 days, which is when they are most infectious.
    • Children and young people aged 18 and under, the advice is 3 days. Please do continue to notify us if you do use a test and test positive.
  • There is no longer a requirement for pupils or staff to return a negative test before returning to school once they have remained at home for the recommended period of time.
  • We are not permitted to distribute the remaining test stock we have in school. We are waiting for further information on what will happen with these tests.

Ventilation and ongoing hygiene measures will continue to be in place in school. Remote learning remains in place for learners who are absent with a confirmed COVID case, or in the exceptional event of a class group having to work remotely. We will review the requirements and communicate expectations to families throughout this term. As ever, please do not hesitate to contact school directly if you have any concerns at all.

25th Feb 2022

From Thursday 24 February, the Government removed the legal requirement to self-isolate following a positive test.

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 self-isolation support payments, national funding for practical support and the medicine delivery service will no longer be available.
  • End routine contact tracing. Contacts will no longer be required to self-isolate or advised to take daily tests. Staff, children and young people should attend their education settings as usual. This includes staff who have been in close contact within their household, unless they are able to work from home.
  • End the legal obligation for individuals to tell their employers when they are required to self-isolate.

More detail can be found in the Living with COVID-19 plan .

 

21st Jan 2022

Changes to the self-isolation period for those who test positive for COVID-19 came into effect in England on Monday 17th January 2022 and applies to all positive cases, regardless of vaccination status.

People who are self-isolating with COVID-19 have the option to reduce their isolation period after 5 full days if they test negative with an LFD test on both day 5 and day 6 and they do not have a temperature. 

If the result of either test is positive, they should continue to self-isolate until they get negative results from two LFD tests on consecutive days or until they have completed 10 full days of self-isolation, whichever is earliest.

The new rules also apply to people who are already isolating – so if someone was already isolating before Monday 17th January, they can take LFD tests on day 5 and 6 and if they are both negative and they have no temperature they can end their isolation.

 

Anyone who is unable to take LFD tests or anyone who continues to have a temperature will need to complete the full 10-day period of self-isolation.

Further information on self-isolation for those with COVID-19 is available. 

Below is a flow chart with a summary of the new guidance but please do contact us at school if you need any support or help. You can download the flow chart here.

 

14th Jan 2022

Action to take if your child develops COVID symptoms:

If your child develops COVID symptoms (a new continuous cough, a high temperature a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)) they should go for a PCR test. You can access a test via: Get a free PCR test to check if you have coronavirus (COVID-19) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

 

Action to take if your child receives a positive LFD or PCR result:

If your child receives a positive PCR result or a positive LFD test result (whether they have symptoms or not) then they must isolate. The latest guidance on what action to take can be found at:

When to self-isolate and what to do - Coronavirus (COVID-19) - NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

 

How to keep your family and others safe:

We would like to remind you of the things you can do to keep your family and others as safe as possible.

  • Get vaccinated- everyone aged 12 and over can now book a vaccination via Book or manage a coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination - NHS (www.nhs.uk)
  • wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitiser regularly throughout the day
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • meet people outside and avoid crowded areas
  • open doors and windows to let in fresh air if meeting people inside
  • wear a face covering if aged 11 and over when it's hard to stay away from other people – particularly indoors or in crowded places
  • take part in regular LFD testing, if aged 11 or over

 

If you have been in contact with someone with COVID-19

  • Limit close contact with other people outside the household, especially in enclosed spaces
  • Stay away from people who are clinically vulnerable as much as possible
  • Limit contact with anyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable

 

If anyone in your household develops COVID-19 symptoms

  • The three main symptoms of COVID-19 are:
    1. New continuous cough and/or
    2. High temperature and/or
    3. Loss of or change in normal sense of taste or smell
  • Anyone with any of these symptoms should stay at home and arrange a PCR test. Your child should not come to school if they are unwell.
  • If the test result is positive, the person must self-isolate. Follow the Stay at Home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed COVID-19.

 

From Monday 17th January 2022, new changes to the COVID-19 isolation rules at a national will come into effect. The main changes are:

  • The self-isolation period for adults who test positive for COVID-19 will reduce from seven to five days. Adults can now come out of isolation on day 6 but only if they have negative lateral flow tests on day 5 and 6 of their isolation.

An adult or child tests positive for COVID-19 via a LFT test 

  • The adult or child should isolate immediately.
  • From 11th January, the government suspended the requirement for a confirmatory PCR test to begin a period of isolation, therefore people should isolate for at least five days from the first day of their positive LFT.
  • However, if you have symptoms you must still have a confirmatory PCR. PCR tests can still be booked online by clicking here.
  • The first LFT test should not be taken before day 5 and the second one should be taken no sooner than 24 hours later.
  • Adults and children who have tested negative on their LFT on day 5 and 6 may leave isolation if they no longer have any symptoms of COVID-19 including a high temperature.
  • If any LFT test result is positive on day 6, they should continue to isolate and should wait 24 hours before taking the next LFT test.
  • Adults are also advised to complete an LFT test for the remainder of the 10-day isolation period and should limit close contact with other people outside your household, especially in crowded, enclosed or poorly ventilated spaces. 

Close contacts:

  • Adults who are fully vaccinated and children and young people between the ages of 5 and 18 years and 6 months are not required to self-isolate however, close contacts are strongly advised to complete daily LFT tests for at least 5 days from the first COVID case

Further Information

Further information is available at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

 

 

9th December 2021 - Advice to all Parents/carers for information

Dear Parents/Carers,

We have been advised by Public Health England that there has been confirmed cases of COVID-19 within St Marie’s.

We know that you may find this concerning but we are continuing to monitor the situation and are working closely with UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA formerly PHE).  This letter is to inform you of the current situation and provide advice on how to support your child. Please be reassured that for most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness.

St Marie’s remains open and your child should continue to attend as normal if they remain well. We encourage household members that are aged 11 and over to continue with twice weekly LFD testing to help identify cases promptly.

If you think your child is a close contact but has not been contacted directly by NHS Test and Trace please follow the guidance here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-for-contacts-of-people-with-possible-or-confirmed-coronavirus-covid-19-infection-who-do-not-live-with-the-person/guidance-for-contacts-of-people-with-possible-or-confirmed-coronavirus-covid-19-infection-who-do-not-live-with-the-person#i-think-i-have-had-contact-with-someone-who-has-tested-positive-for-covid-19-but-i-have-not-been-notified-and-advised-to-self-isolate-what-should-i-do  

What to do if your child develops symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) or tests positive for COVID-19

If your child develops symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), they should get a PCR test and remain at home, at least until the result is known. If negative, the child can end self-isolation; if positive, the child should isolate until at least 10 days after their symptoms appeared. Symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are a new, continuous cough, or a high temperature, or a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia).   If the child has a positive test result but do not have symptoms, they should stay at home and self-isolate for 10 days from the date the positive test was taken. This isolation period will be extended if they go on to develop symptoms by counting 10 full days from the day following their symptom onset. Anyone with symptoms will be eligible for a PCR test (the normally available test type) and this can be arranged via Get a free PCR test to check if you have coronavirus (COVID-19) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) or by calling 119. 

 

Instructions for people who live in the same household as someone with COVID-19 (tested positive or symptomatic awaiting a test result)

From 16 August, you will not be required to self-isolate if you are a contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 and any of the following apply:

  • you are fully vaccinated
  • you are below the age of 18 years 6 months
  • you have taken part in or are currently part of an approved COVID-19 vaccine trial
  • you are not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons

Fully vaccinated means that you have been vaccinated with an MHRA approved COVID-19 vaccine in the UK, and at least 14 days have passed since you received the recommended doses of that vaccine.

NHS Test and Trace will contact you to let you know that you have been identified as a contact and check whether you are legally required to self-isolate. If you are not legally required to self-isolate, you will be provided with advice on testing and given guidance on preventing the spread of COVID-19. Even if you do not have symptoms, you will be advised to have a PCR test as soon as possible.

Any member of the household who is aged 18 years and 6 months or over and has only received one dose of COVID-19 vaccine or has not received any dose of the COVID-19 vaccination will still be required to self-isolate as household contact of a someone with COVID-19 symptoms awaiting testing and someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Please read the stay at home guidance, which provides information on this.

Household members who are not exempt from isolation as close contacts should not go to work, school/college/childcare/education setting or public areas, and exercise should be taken within the home. If you require help with buying groceries, other shopping or picking up medication, or walking a dog, you should ask friends or family. Alternatively, you can order your shopping online and medication by phone or online. Household members staying at home for 10 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community.

You could be fined if you do not self-isolate following a notification by NHS Test and Trace. You may be entitled to a one-off payment of £500 through the NHS Test and Trace Support Payment scheme if you are required to stay at home and self-isolate or you are the parent or guardian of a child who has been told to self-isolate.

Those who are clinically extremely vulnerable should be supported to minimise their contact with other people in the household during this period, regardless of whether others have symptoms or not.

Instructions for household contacts who are not required to self-isolate from 16 August

Even if you are vaccinated, you can still be infected with COVID-19 and pass it on to others. If you are identified as a contact of someone with COVID-19 but you are not required to self-isolate, you can help protect others by following the guidance on how to stay safe and help prevent the spread. As well as getting a PCR test, you may also consider:

  • limiting close contact with other people outside your household, especially in enclosed spaces
  • wearing a face covering for those aged 11 and over in crowded places such as school/college/public transport
  • limiting contact with anyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable
  • taking part in regular LFD testing

You should follow this advice while the person in your household with COVID-19 is self-isolating.

If you are a health or social care worker or a student undertaking a work placement   who has been identified as a household contact and are exempt from self-isolation, there is additional guidance available that you should follow to reduce the risk of spread of COVID-19 in these settings.

If you develop symptoms at any time, even if these are mild, self-isolate immediately, arrange to have a COVID-19 PCR test and follow the guidance for people with COVID-19 symptoms.

For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness.

If your child does develop symptoms, you can seek advice from the nhs.uk website at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/check-if-you-have-coronavirus-symptoms/. If you are concerned about your child’s symptoms, or they are worsening you can seek advice from NHS 111 at https://111.nhs.uk/ or by phoning 111.

How to stop coronavirus (COVID-19) spreading

There are things you can do to help reduce the risk of you and anyone you live with getting ill with coronavirus (COVID-19):

  • get vaccinated – everyone aged 12 and over can book COVID-19 vaccination appointments now and 12-17 year olds are being offered 1 dose of the vaccination.
  • wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitiser regularly throughout the day
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • meet people outside and avoid crowded areas
  • open doors and windows to let in fresh air if meeting people inside
  • wear a face covering if aged 11 and over when it's hard to stay away from other people – particularly indoors or in crowded places
  • participate in twice weekly LFD testing following national guidelines (recommended for 11 years and over). We encourage you to log your results here: https://www.gov.uk/log-test-site-covid19-results

Further Information

Further information is available at

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Yours sincerely

Mr J Fernandes

Headteacher

 

 

8th November 2021

Dear Parents/Carers,

Welcome back everyone. I hope that you all managed to have a wonderful half term break filled with lots of fun, family time and of course, lots of reading.

As we begin the second half of the autumn term, I am conscious that we are heading into what is traditionally a very busy time as we approach Advent and Christmas and all the associated events that come with this time of year.

Unfortunately, as we begin this new half term, we do so with the background of rising COVID-19 rates and increasing local and national infection rates.

In addition, we have also noticed how many more children are testing positive in school and are also becoming ill from other common illnesses which seem to be far more severe than in previous years. This is partly because our society has opened up and we have begun to mix more as restrictions have been lifted and we are sharing more colds, viruses and sickness bugs.

As winter draws in and we all naturally retreat indoors, we are heading into a period in which people will be gathering in enclosed spaces and the possibility for more new infections. Last Friday,  I sent all our families a copy of a letter from Greg Fell, the Director of Public Health for Sheffield, who urged us to be cautious and restrict the numbers of events and meetings involving large numbers of pupils, parents/carers and staff. The letter reminds parents/carers of the important measures to take to reduce virus transmission and particularly advises on a new measure if you have any secondary age children. Please take the time to read it.

With all this in mind, I have consulted with our Governors and staff team, and it was agreed that we should now put back into place some of the restrictions we had before the summer in an effort to slow the spread of the virus; keeping everyone safe and attending school over the coming months. Please be assured that the measures I will outline below are not the same as we had before summer but a graduated approach in which we aim to balance the relative normality of the time we have enjoyed so far with being proactive in our approach to safeguard our community.

First, please can I remind everyone to abide by the following COVID-19 arrangements as advised nationally and adapted locally due to rising infections:

  • If your child has symptoms of COVID-19, they must remain at home and have a PCR test.
  • If the result comes back as positive, your child must isolate for 10 days.
  • If someone in your household tests positive for COVID-19 please ensure that ALL household members have a PCR test (whether they have symptoms or not). You can access a PCR test via: https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test

In addition to the wider Sheffield measures outlined in Greg Fell’s letter, the measures we will be reintroducing are below:

  1. Staff will now be wearing facemasks again within communal areas in school. Social distancing measures will be re-introduced in some areas to limit the numbers of staff/adults gathering in one place.
  2. All adults who are entering the school building must wear a face covering. This includes any visits/appointments and attendance at any planned school events.
  3. We will not be returning to mandatory facemasks at the school gates, but we respectfully ask that you consider wearing one and, if you require to speak to a member of staff, that you wear a face covering even if you are outside. Staff have asked that as they are wearing face coverings again, they would appreciate others who are talking to them to do the same. Thank you for your support.
  4. Our parent/teacher meetings taking place this term will be virtual as communicated in the last newsletter.
  5. We are currently planning a virtual KS1 Christmas show and KS2 Carol service. We will of course review this in line with local case rates and re-instate it, if safe to do so.
  6. We are currently reviewing our school trips planned this term to the Crucible and Showroom Theatres and will contact parents directly with any changes.

We hope that you understand the reasons for introducing some additional measures. Depending on local and national guidance and case rates in school, we may need to bring back stronger measures. We hope that, by adhering to these additional rules, we can reduce the chances of infection and keep everyone safe and attending school over the winter months.

If you have any questions or problems, please don’t hesitate to speak to either your child’s class teacher or myself who will be more than happy to support you in any way we can.

God Bless,

Mr Fernandes

 
 

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