COVID-19 coronavirus update
UPDATED 30 September 2020
What to do if your child is unwell
The following information may be helpful to parents if their son or daughter is unwell.
The key message is this:
If you child has any of the possible COVID-19 (coronavirus) symptoms, you MUST NOT send them to school.
The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- a new, continuous cough – this means 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)
- a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
Most people with coronavirus have at least 1 of these symptoms. If your child is unwell but does not have any of these symptoms, they should stay at home while unwell as would normally be the case. Consult NHS 111 or your GP is you are unsure what to do.
Please read the following information carefully. It explains what to do if your child develops COVID-19 (coronavirus) symptoms, or if someone else in your household does.
What do I do if my child develops symptoms?
Check whether your child has a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss or change to their sense of smell or taste. These are the main symptoms of COVID-19 (coronavirus).
- Book a coronavirus test for your child.
- Your child must not come into school if they have symptoms. They must self-isolate at home.
- Everyone in the household must self-isolate until your child’s test result comes through.
- You may need to provide details of anyone your child has been in close contact with if they were to test positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) or if asked by NHS Test and Trace.
- Inform the school immediately of the results of the test. Follow the guidance you will be given and any additional information the school may provide.
What do I do if someone else in my household develops symptoms?
If someone other than your child develops symptoms, then you should arrange for them to have a COVID-19 (coronavirus) test as soon as possible.
Your child must not come into school if someone else in their household has COVID-19 (coronavirus) symptoms. They must self-isolate at home in line with NHS guidance until the result comes through for the person who has had the test.
Your child (and anyone else in the household) should self-isolate for 14 days if another member of the household
- has symptoms of coronavirus and tested positive, had an unclear result or did not have a test
- tested positive but has not had symptoms This is because it can take 14 days for symptoms to appear.
Your child can stop self-isolating after 14 days if they do not develop any symptoms of COVID-19 (coronavirus) – a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss of taste or smell.
Slough Borough Council has also produced a helpful guide for parents which summarises this advice. It can be accessed through the link below:
General advice for students and families outside school
Please follow the Government guidance when outside the school
Hands, Face and Space
Wash your hands often
- With soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Wear a face covering
- On public transport, in indoor public spaces, in other places where social distancing is difficult or not possible.
Keep your distance
- When you are outside your home or meeting people you do not live with or who are not in your support ‘bubble’. You should be 2 metres apart where possible - 1 metre plus when not possible.
Rule of 6
- When meeting friends and family you do not live with (or have formed a support bubble with) you must not meet in a group of more than 6, indoors or outdoors.
How does the school handle a confirmed case of COVID-19?
If a case of COVID-19 is confirmed within the school community, the school will follow the procedures outlined in the DfE guidance and additional guidance from Slough Borough Council. This involves seeking immediate advice from the Department for Education in terms of how many students we should be asking to self-isolate and for how long. Slough Borough Council would also be informed of the details of the confirmed case.
In the event of a confirmed case of COVID-19, the basic strategy is to ask all close contacts of that student to self-isolate at home for a period of 14 days.
What is a 'close contact'?
Close contacts are those who have spent
- more than 15 minutes within 2m of a confirmed case, or
- a shorter time at a distance of 1m or less, for example face to face
We can identify close contacts within lessons from our seating plans and would identify the students sitting in front, behind and to the sides of the confirmed case, over the two days prior to the confirmed case having developed symptoms or receiving a positive test result. We would also ask those students judged to be close contacts during social time to self-isolate. Where students do not have fixed seats in rooms, for example during practical subjects, we would ask the teachers for details of the groups with which the affected student had worked.
By identifying the close contacts in this way, in line with the Department for Education guidance, we can minimise the number of students who need to self isolate in the event of a confirmed case. We would not expect to send the whole year group home unless we were very uncertain as to who counted as close contacts.
It is essential that any students sent home to self isolate do so for the full 14 days from their last contact with the affected person. If they develop symptoms themselves, they should obtain a coronavirus test. If they do not develop symptoms, or if a test proves negative, they should still isolate for the full period.
What about teachers?
Teaching staff are asked to maintain 2m social distancing from students in lessons, and our classrooms are set out to enable this. Where this distancing is not possible, or where closer support for students may be needed, staff may use face shields or Perspex screens to put a physical barrier between themselves and the students. it is therefore unlikely that staff would count as close contacts of students.
Autumn term reopening
In response to the Government guidance, the school has made a number of changes to how the school operates. These are described in detail in the following guidance document:
The full Government guidance on reopening schools can be found on the DfE website here.
The school has also undertaken a formal risk assessment in line with health and safety law. The risk assessment document can be found by accessing the link below. The document reflects the procedures and control measures described in the guidance for parents and students.
Government guidance and useful information
The Government and Public Health England have produced resources which are intended to be helpful to parents as children return to school.
These can be accessed through the website www.gov.uk/backtoschool
This includes the following leaflet:
Other useful information on coronavirus can be accessed as follows:
NHS Test and Trace
The importance of hygiene
Personal hygiene is the most important way we can tackle COVID-19, especially washing hands more, and the 'catch it, bin it, kill it' strategy for those with coughs and sneezes.
Wash your hands more often, for 20 seconds with soap and hot water.
In addition to handwashing before eating and after sneezing, you should wash your hands after using toilets and after travelling on public transport.
- 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
- wash your hands with soap and water often – use hand sanitiser gel (although this is currently difficult to obtain) if soap and water are not available
- try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
- do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
For a helpful video, go to https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/best-way-to-wash-your-hands/