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Update 3rd January 2022

Dear parent

 

I hope you had a relaxing Christmas break with your family and the children are looking forward to returning to school on Wednesday.

 

Covid Update

Public Health have confirmed that Covid-19 case rates in Somerset are currently very high and numbers are expected to continue increasing over the coming weeks. Omicron is now the dominant strain of Covid-19 in the South-West, but we are behind the peak of cases seen in London and the South East, this will come to the South West in the next week or two. Therefore, Amber measures remain in place and we will continue to follow the routines put in place before Christmas (no assemblies, restricting Yr group mixing etc).

Our current arrival and pick up procedures will continue as usual. However, please can you make sure you leave the school site immediately after drop-off and not to go into cloakrooms or classrooms areas. We are concerned about congestion in the morning and must avoid unnecessary close contact between adults to keep everyone safe. Year groups will be kept apart as much as possible. Children will wash hands regularly with anti-bacterial soap: on arrival, coming in from play and lunch, after going to the toilet, before and after eating and after coughing/sneezing. Tissues will be available in each room with a catch-it, bin-it, kill-it approach being used.

 

Information on the changes to the self-isolation period for individuals who test positive for COVID-19

Since Wednesday 22 December, the 10 day self-isolation period for people who record a positive PCR test result for COVID-19 has been reduced to 7 days in most circumstances, unless you cannot test for any reason.

Individuals may now take LFD tests on day 6 and day 7 of their self-isolation period. Those who receive two negative test results are no longer required to complete 10 full days of self-isolation. The first test must be taken no earlier than day 6 of the self-isolation period and tests must be taken 24 hours apart. This also applies to children under 5, with LFD testing at parental or guardian discretion. If both these test results are negative, and you do not have a high temperature, you may end your self-isolation after the second negative test result and return to your education setting from day 8.

Anyone who is unable to take LFD tests will need to complete the full 10 day period of self-isolation. Further information is available in the stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed COVID-19 infection.

 

Daily testing for close contacts of COVID-19

People who are fully vaccinated, or children and young people aged between 5 and 18 years and 6 months, identified as a close contact of someone with COVID-19, should take an LFD test every day for seven days and continue to attend their setting as normal, unless they have a positive test result or develop symptoms at any time.

Children under 5 are not being advised to take part in daily testing of close contacts. If a child under 5 is a contact of a confirmed case, they are not required to self-isolate and should not start daily testing. If they live in the same household as someone with COVID-19 they should limit their contact with anyone who is at higher risk of severe illness if infected with COVID-19, and arrange to take a PCR test as soon as possible. They can continue to attend an education or childcare setting while waiting for the PCR result. If the test is positive, they should follow the stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed COVID-19 infection.

 

The challenge over the next few weeks will be maintaining safe staffing levels. Please rest assured that we will do everything we can to keep every class open to children whilst at the same time ensuring everyone’s safety.  

Thank you for your continued support. Hopefully it will not be too long before we can get back to normal and lift the restrictions.

 

Best wishes

Gary Hobbs

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