Update: 28th February 2020
As you are aware from our previous communication, the government advice regarding coronavirus has changed and now extends to people who have recently visited Northern Italy, Iran, South Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar.
Following this latest guidance, one family has notified us that they have recently returned from one of the affected towns in Northern Italy and despite not displaying any symptoms they are following the advice from NHS direct, to self-isolate for a period of time.
Two other families have also informed us that over half-term they have travelled close to the affected regions and have reported experiencing cold/flu like symptoms. On the school’s advice they have been in contact with NHS direct and are likely to be screened for the virus in the coming days. They will not be returning to school until we know the results of the pending tests.
The Government advice for anyone who has been in contact with a suspected case in a childcare or educational setting, is that no restrictions or special control measures are required while laboratory test results for COVID-19 are awaited. There is no need to close the setting or send other learners or staff home. As a precautionary measure, the NHS are currently testing a very large number of people who have travelled back from affected countries, the vast majority of whom test negative. Therefore, until the outcome of test results is known there is no action that staff members need to take apart from cleaning specific areas and disposing of waste.
If there is a confirmed case, a risk assessment will be undertaken by the educational establishment with advice from the local Health Protection Team. In most cases, closure of the childcare or education setting will be unnecessary but this will be a local decision.
We shall continue to follow the latest advice from the UK Government and Public Health England and will of course update you via email as and when necessary.
Mr M Kiely