1st November 2020
Dear Parents and Carers,
I do hope you have all had a good week despite the awful weather. You will no doubt be aware that as of Thursday we are entering another national lockdown. You will also be aware that this time schools are remaining open for all pupils. I want to assure you that we will continue to do our very best to keep everyone safe throughout this by following all the guidelines and working as a community. You have supported us so helpfully in this throughout the last few months and I know that you will continue to do so over the coming weeks. Thank you! This will enable the children to keep coming to school and having the familiarity of their routines as far as possible.
As yet none of the guidance for schools has changed. I will of course keep you posted if anything is altered.
I have included some reminders below which I hope will be helpful as we return to school tomorrow.
Arrival and departure arrangements
Please do keep to the times and arrangements as far as is possible:
Arrival – Parent Pool door:
8.50 Penguin, Hedgehog, Jellyfish
9.00 Flamingo and Bluebird
9.10 Seahorse, Caterpillar and Bumblebee
9.20 Any personalised arrivals
Departure – Parent Pool door:
2.20 Any personalised departures
2.30 Seahorse, Bumblebee and Caterpillar
2.40 Flamingo and Bluebird
2.50 Jellyfish, Hedgehog and Penguin
Arrival – Parent Side Gate:
8.50 Squirrel and Wolves
9.00 Elephant and Giraffe
9.10 Starfish, Dolphin and Rainbow Fish
Departure – Parent Side Gate:
2.30 Dolphin, Starfish and Rainbow Fish
2.40 Squirrel and Wolves
2.50 Elephant and Giraffe
A reminder of Covid-19 symptoms and procedures
Of course, as children return to school after a week at home seasonal colds, bugs and viruses other than Covid-19 inevitably spread around. We are all faced with the challenge of trying to work out what the children are suffering with when they display the various symptoms of colds and flu and I know a number of you are anxious about this. I have included again all the information we have in order to help you when you are assessing your son or daughter’s health. You can find this in video form at the bottom of the coronavirus page on our website (in the frequently asked questions videos): https://palatineschool.org/coronavirus-covid-19/
Please do ensure your children do not attend school if they have any of the symptoms below.
- 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
If a child displays these symptoms whilst in school we will ask you to collect them and carry out the required procedures around this. Please do ensure school has up to date contact details as this is essential to keeping out community safe.
What you need to do if a member of your family has symptoms of coronavirus
- If you/ your child have symptoms of COVID-19 however mild, self-isolate for at least 10 days from when your /their symptoms started. You should arrange to have a test / arrange for them to have a test to see if you/ they have COVID-19. Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
- If you are not experiencing symptoms but have tested positive for COVID-19, self-isolate for at least 10 days, starting from the day the test was taken.
- If you develop symptoms during this isolation period, restart your 10-day isolation from the day you developed symptoms.
- After 10 days, if you still have a temperature you should continue to self-isolate and seek medical advice.
- You do not need to self-isolate after 10 days if you only have a cough or loss of sense of smell or taste, as these symptoms can last for several weeks after the infection has gone. See the ending isolation section below for more information.
- All other household members need to stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days.
- The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the household became ill or if they do not have symptoms, from the day their test was taken.
- If anyone else in the household starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for at least 10 days from when their symptoms appear, regardless of what day they are on in their original 14-day isolation period.
- Following a positive test result, you will receive a request by text, email or phone to log into the NHS Test and Trace service website and provide information about recent close contacts.
- If you develop COVID-19 symptoms again at any point after ending your first period of isolation (self or household), follow the guidance on self-isolation again. The section below has further information.
Government guidance about Track and Trace
Follow this advice if you’re told by NHS Test and Trace that you’ve been in contact with a person who has coronavirus (COVID-19) and must stay at home (self-isolate).
Stay at home for 14 days
If you’re told to self-isolate because you’ve been in contact with a person who has coronavirus:
- self-isolate for 14 days from the day you were last in contact with the person – as it can take up to 14 days for symptoms to appear
- do not leave your home for any reason – if you need food or medicine, order it online or by phone, or ask friends and family to drop it off at your home
- do not have visitors in your home, including friends and family – except for essential care
- try to avoid contact with anyone you live with as much as possible
- people you live with do not need to self-isolate if you do not have symptoms
- people in your support bubble do not need to self-isolate if you do not have symptoms
If you get symptoms of coronavirus
If you get any symptoms of coronavirus (a high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste) while you’re self-isolating:
- get a test to check if you have coronavirus as soon as possible
- anyone you live with must self-isolate until you’ve been tested and received your result
- anyone in your support bubble must self-isolate until you’ve been tested and received your result
What to do when you get your test result
If you test negative (the test did not find coronavirus):
- keep self-isolating for the rest of the 14 days from when you were last in contact with the person who has coronavirus – as you could get symptoms after being tested
- anyone you live with can stop self-isolating if they do not have symptoms
- anyone in your support bubble can stop self-isolating if they do not have symptoms
If you test positive (you have coronavirus):
- self-isolate for at least 10 days from when your symptoms started – even if it means you’re self-isolating for longer than 14 days
- anyone you live with must self-isolate for 14 days from when your symptoms started
- anyone in your support bubble must self-isolate for 14 days from when your symptoms started
If you do not get symptoms of coronavirus
If you do not get any symptoms of coronavirus while self-isolating:
- you can stop self-isolating after 14 days
- you do not need to have a test
How NHS Test and Trace will contact you
You’ll be contacted by email, text or phone.
Text messages will come from NHStracing. Calls will come from 0300 0135 000.
Children under 18 will be contacted by phone wherever possible and asked for their parent or guardian’s permission to continue the call.
You’ll be asked to sign in to the NHS Test and Trace contact tracing website at https://contact-tracing.phe.gov.uk.
If you cannot use the contact tracing website, they will call you.
The NHS Test and Trace service will not:
- ask for bank details or payments
- ask for details of any other accounts, such as social media
- ask you to set up a password or PIN number over the phone
- ask you to call a premium rate number, such as those starting 09 or 087
The staff at Palatine will, of course, also be following all the guidelines and you can find details of our risk assessment and control measures at the bottom of the Coronavirus page on our website: https://palatineschool.org/coronavirus-covid-19/ This does mean, for example, that they too will need to follow guidelines in regards to what to do if they have symptoms and / or if track and trace contact them. This inevitably will lead to possible last minute staffing changes and in extreme circumstances class closures should there be insufficient staff in school to be safe. We will do everything that we can do prevent this, however, I felt it was important to explain in order to help you forward plan as I know it is easier to have thought things through before a situation arises. This would absolutely be the last resort and I am hoping we will have another smooth, safe and happy half term where the children can enjoy their learning!
Thank you again for working with us. The supportive, respectful team spirit of our community where we have worked together to follow guidelines has kept us all safe and I am looking forward to another fantastic half term in school. Thank you for your vigilance, your understanding that we must all play our part in this and for your continued warmth and positivity.
Have a lovely day. See you tomorrow!
Very best wishes