Text inside the alertclosePlease click on this link to access our whole school COVID-19 risk assessment.
Please click on this link to access COVID-19 absence procedures.
COVID-19 GOVERNMENT GUIDANCE
Important message for Parents/Carers
It has been great to see so many children and young people returning to school and the work that has been conducted locally to ensure a safe return. It is inevitable that for some children and young people they will feel unwell and for many this could include Covid related symptoms.
This message contains important information about how you can get a test. You cannot get a test by arriving at the Testing Centre without an appointment and you should not go to the hospital (Emergency Department) or your GP for a test.
Evidence to date has shown that children usually have much milder symptoms and they have tended to pick up the infection from home rather than from school. However it remains extremely important that any child with symptoms of Covid stays away for school, to avoid the risk of spreading infection to others, including the more vulnerable. These symptoms are:
- high temperature – feeling hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- new, continuous cough – coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different from normal
Over the last week we have seen a number of children being referred for a Covid 19 test in accordance with national guidance. If your child has been in close contact with a confirmed case, they will be asked to self-isolate at home. Please DO NOT try to get your child tested unless they have developed the symptoms of COVID19. A negative test result does not mean that they can go back to school; it simply means that they had not fully developed the illness at the time of the test, and they could develop the illness at any point in the 14 days.
We are very aware that in Plymouth, as elsewhere, there have been delays in accessing tests. This is a national issue as laboratory capacity for analysing tests is being directed to areas in the country with the highest numbers of COVID-19 cases. We are doing all we can to work with national agencies to increase the capacity available.
We understand how frustrating this can be, particularly with children returning to school and being asked to stay off school until they can get a COVID-19 test. However, it is crucial that we keep our schools open, and continue to keep our children and communities safe.
We therefore ask that you continue to follow government guidance and keep your child at home, and book a test as soon as you are able. You only need to get a test if your child has the symptoms listed above. If your child has these symptoms, it is really important that you do not send them to school. The test is best done in the first 5 days of having symptoms.
The current routes for getting a test are :
- Parents book a test online athttps://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/symptoms/coronavirus-in-children/ or by calling 119
- If parents or carers are unable to book a local slot then they can email email@example.com explaining that the test is for a child attending a Plymouth school and they will be supported to access local testing.
If you cannot book a test immediately, we ask that you try again as the system is currently very busy and your patience is appreciated.
If you are not able to secure a test, it is important that your child remains away from school for the 10 day isolation period. As part of creating a Covid safe school, children must not return before the isolation period is over. Please work with your school to keep all children and young people safe.
You can also use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
- you’re worried about your symptoms
- you’re not sure what to do
Call 111 if you cannot get help online.
More advice on what to do can be found here. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/symptoms/
We would like to reassure you that we are working hard to put additional local arrangements in place to boost our local testing availability until national testing capacity can be increased and we will update you as soon as the situation changes.
Service Director for Education, Participation and Skills
Education, Participation and Skills
Please click on this link to access the Goverment #backtoschoolsafely campaign.
1. Minimise contact with individuals who are unwell by ensuring that those who have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, or who have someone in their household who does, do not attend school
Ensuring that pupils, staff and other adults do not come into the school if they have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, or have tested positive in at least the last 10 days, and ensuring anyone developing those symptoms during the school day is sent home, are essential actions to reduce the risk in schools and further drive down transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19).
Other members of their household (including any siblings) should self-isolate for 14 days from when the symptomatic person first had symptoms.
2. Clean hands thoroughly more often than usual
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is an easy virus to kill when it is on skin. This can be done with soap and running water or hand sanitiser. Schools must ensure that pupils clean their hands regularly, including when they arrive at school, when they return from breaks, when they change rooms and before and after eating. Regular and thorough hand cleaning is going to be needed for the foreseeable future.
3. Ensure good respiratory hygiene by promoting the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach
The ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach continues to be very important, so schools must ensure that they have enough tissues and bins available in the school to support pupils and staff to follow this routine. As with hand cleaning, schools must ensure younger children and those with complex needs are helped to get this right, and all pupils understand that this is now part of how school operates.
4. Introduce enhanced cleaning, including cleaning frequently touched surfaces often using standard products, such as detergents and bleach.
5. Minimise contact between individuals and maintain social distancing wherever possible
Minimising contacts and mixing between people reduces transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19). Schools must do everything possible to minimise contacts and mixing while delivering a broad and balanced curriculum.
The overarching principle to apply is reducing the number of contacts between children and staff. This can be achieved through keeping groups separate (in ‘bubbles’) and through maintaining distance between individuals. These are not alternative options and both measures will help, but the balance between them will change depending on:
- children’s ability to distance
- the lay out of the school
- the feasibility of keeping distinct groups separate while offering a broad curriculum (especially at secondary)
It is likely that for younger children the emphasis will be on separating groups, and for older children it will be on distancing. For children old enough, they should also be supported to maintain distance and not touch staff where possible.
Groups should be kept apart, meaning that schools should avoid large gatherings such as assemblies or collective worship with more than one group.
In March when the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak was increasing, we made clear no parent would be penalised or sanctioned for their child’s non-attendance at school.
Now the circumstances have changed and it is vital for all children to return to school to minimise as far as possible the longer-term impact of the pandemic on children’s education, wellbeing and wider development.
Missing out on more time in the classroom risks pupils falling further behind. Those with higher overall absence tend to achieve less well in both primary and secondary school. School attendance will therefore be mandatory again from the beginning of the autumn term. This means from that point, the usual rules on school attendance will apply, including:
- parents’ duty to secure that their child attends regularly at school where the child is a registered pupil at school and they are of compulsory school age;
- schools’ responsibilities to record attendance and follow up absence
- the availability to issue sanctions, including fixed penalty notices in line with local authorities’ codes of conduct
Pupils who are shielding or self-isolating
We now know much more about coronavirus (COVID-19) and so in future there will be far fewer children and young people advised to shield whenever community transmission rates are high. Therefore, the majority of pupils will be able to return to school. You should note however that:
- a small number of pupils will still be unable to attend in line with public health advice because they are self-isolating and have had symptoms or a positive test result themselves; or because they are a close contact of someone who has coronavirus (COVID-19)
- if rates of the disease rise in local areas, children (or family members) from that area, and that area only, will be advised to shield during the period where rates remain high and therefore they may be temporarily absent (see below).
- some pupils no longer required to shield but who generally remain under the care of a specialist health professional may need to discuss their care with their health professional before returning to school (usually at their next planned clinical appointment). You can find more advice from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health at COVID-19 – ‘shielding’ guidance for children and young people
- Where a pupil is unable to attend school because they are complying with clinical and/or public health advice, we expect schools to be able to immediately offer them access to remote education. Schools should monitor engagement with this activity (as set out in the section below).Where children are not able to attend school as parents are following clinical and/or public health advice, absence will not be penalised.
Uniforms do not need to be cleaned any more often than usual, nor do they need to be cleaned using methods which are different from normal.
Process in the event of local outbreaks
If a local area sees a spike in infection rates that is resulting in localised community spread, appropriate authorities will decide which measures to implement to help contain the spread. The Department for Education will be involved in decisions at a local and national level affecting a geographical area, and will support appropriate authorities and individual settings to follow the health advice. We will provide more information on this process in due course.
Contingency plans for outbreaks
In the event of a local outbreak, the PHE health protection team or local authority may advise a school or number of schools to close temporarily to help control transmission. Schools will also need a contingency plan for this eventuality. This may involve a return to remaining open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers, and providing remote education for all other pupils.
The Department for Education coronavirus helpline is available to answer questions about COVID-19 relating to education and children’s social care. Staff, parents and young people can contact this helpline as follows:
Phone: 0800 046 8687
Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday), 10am to 4pm (Saturday to Sunday)
If you work in a school, please have your unique reference number (URN or UKPRN) available when calling the hotline.
Instagram and Twitter
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PLASTIC FREE PLEDGE – NOW WE NEED YOUR HELP!
As you know, High View have taken the pledge to become a single use plastic free school in order to support our environment. Having investigated things which we can change, we have noticed that lots of children who have a packed lunch don’t have refillable drink bottles. We would like to stop the use of single use plastic drinks i.e. fruit shoot etc., therefore we will now be providing juice, milk or water for children who do not have a reusable bottle. Please can we ask that your child only brings in a refillable bottle or has a school supplied drink from now on?
Thank you for your support.