staggered start and rapid testing - letter to parents & carers
30 December 2020
Dear Parents /Carers
I hope you have had a lovely festive break so far and are keeping safe and well. I’m sure many of you will have heard that on December 30th, the government announced an adjustment to the planned staggered re-opening of school in January. I wanted to write to you to clarify how this affects the community at Blaise High School.
Firstly, the announcement has required us to extend the closure of face to face teaching to all year groups, including year 11. We will remain open for face to face teaching of the children of key workers, those who have EHCPs or who otherwise require an onsite provision. This will be in our on-site Key Worker School. If you believe your child may be eligible for this because they have an EHCP or you are a key worker then please book their place using the form linked below. All learning during this time will be completed remotely. Year 7-10 should follow the links on the attachment that was sent to you in my last letter and is also linked here on our website: https://www.blaisehighschool.co.uk/students/curriculum/remote-learning Year 11 will follow their normal timetable and find all their remote lesson work on their Google Classroom for each subject.
Secondly, the return of students to face to face teaching has changed. Students in Year 11 are to return on Monday 11th January. Students in Y7-10 will not return to face to face teaching until Monday 18th January. Although we are disappointed to not have students on site during this time we both recognise the importance of following government advice to stop the spread of Covid-19 and have great belief that the quality of our remote lessons will continue to ensure our students the best chance of success. Finally, out plans to begin the roll out of mass rapid testing on site will be delayed. Please see below new dates for testing. These continue to be subject to receiving the correct amount of testing kits and we will update you during the week beginning January 4th if we feel we need to adjust our plans at all from the ones I am sharing here. More details of what the mass testing process is and how it works were shared with you in my previous letter which you can read here:
When can my child have their test?
*TBC – to be confirmed in writing during week beginning January 4th
What do parents need to do now?
- Firstly, please complete the form linked here: https://forms.gle/iYSzFihhW8gmKQo49
- Use this to indicate consent for testing, which must be complete before your child’s test date
- Also use this to book a place at Keyworker School if this is relevant for you
- Secondly, review the remote lesson links attached and contact the school if you require additional support with IT and internet access so your child can complete their remote learning
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
How will rapid Covid-19 testing work?
- We are implementing rapid Covid-19 testing in school from January 4th
- We are working hard to ensure our site and staff are ready to deliver these safely. The schedule outlined for testing is subject to receiving the correct amount of testing kits and we will update you on January 4th if we feel we need to adjust our plans at all from the ones I am sharing here
- Below I have organised the explanation of on-site testing into the questions I think you’ll find most useful:
What is a rapid Covid-19 test?
A rapid Covid-19 test involves a simple swab, which the child can administer themselves in their mouth under the supervision and guidance of trained test assistant. Here’s a visual guide to show you what to expect:
Is testing compulsory?
Participation is voluntary and active consent is required. You can provide consent using the form linked below.
How will we be told the test result?
Test results take at least 30 minutes to process so we will require all students to leave site once they have completed their test, unless they are part of the on-site provision. We will then contact, by telephone, anyone whose test result was positive. If you haven’t heard from us then this means your test result was negative
How many times to do I have to be tested?
This first round of testing is known as mass testing. This is where we test all members of our school community. To complete the testing process, you must be tested twice, 3 days apart, the two test times are written above.
Where do students go for this test?
Enter via the main vehicle gate on Station Road. Make your way down the drive to the main sports hall. The sports hall will be the testing centre and staff and signs will be in place to direct you to the correct entrance and route through.
What happens if my child tests positive for Covid-19?
Your child and their household must self-isolate and follow the government guidance linked here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/self-isolation-and-treatment/ . They will also be required to complete an additional PCR home testing kit test which is available nationally. We will provide remote work for them to complete during their isolation time.