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Public Health England information

Dear Headteacher,

I’m sure you are busy reviewing the guidance to help you prepare for extending opening to include all pupils in reception, year 1 and year 6 from the week commencing 1 June, alongside priority groups (vulnerable children and the children of critical workers) or welcoming back year 10 and year 12 pupils for some face-to-face support from 15 June, and we do not want to add to your workload.

Below are links to guidance on the Direct Gov website: 

Notifying Public Health England of Covid-19 situations

We are working very closely with colleagues in local authorities to ensure we can support all schools during this pandemic.

We would also like to remind you to report cases of COVID-19 (coronavirus) to the Health Protection Team in Public Health England using the online reporting system available or by telephone to 0344 225 3560 (opt 0 opt 2). 

As soon as it is available we will share information on responding to cases in schools during the contact tracing phase of the response. 

Resources

In the meantime, attached is a checklist, which you may find useful for assessing your infection prevention and control practices.

More information on teaching resources are available at the PHE website

You may also find the e-bug resource useful. It is a free educational resource for classroom and home use and makes learning about the spread, prevention and treatment of infections fun and accessible for teachers and students. All activities and lesson plans have been designed to compliment the National Curriculum. As well as lesson plans there are also assembly packs.

Symptomatic staff

Finally, we would like to remind you that if any teaching and support staff develop symptoms of COVID-19 they are eligible for testing via the essential worker scheme, which can be a home test kit or drive-through test appointment.

The main symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • 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)
  • 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

Anyone with symptoms should remain away from school for at least 7 days from when symptoms started. After 7 days, if the individual is well and has not had a temperature for 48 hours they do not need to self-isolate any longer. (Please note: the cough and loss of sense of smell may persist for some weeks). 

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