Minerva Learning Trust

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Covid Testing and Consent - September 2021

Published 14/07/2021

Asymptomatic Testing in September

Asymptomatic testing is done via simple and quick tests, known as Lateral Flow Device (LFD) tests. They enable us to rapidly test students and staff, without the need for a laboratory. When done as part of a testing regime, the LFD is very good at picking up those with high viral loads (i.e. those that are the most contagious).

All secondary school students and staff should have the opportunity to receive 2 on-site LFD tests, on their return in September 2021. Parental/career consent is required before a student can be offered a test. Please see privacy notice below. 

Why do pupils and students need to do 2 tests on site when they return in Autumn?

Testing on return is the most effective way to reduce the risk of transmission and support the continuation of face-to-face education. Identifying positive cases on return in the autumn is important, given that most students will not be testing over the summer and will need to re-establish the habit of regular twice weekly testing.

Testing on site on return will also give new pupils and students the opportunity to get used to swabbing in a supervised environment before moving to twice weekly testing at home. For example, primary pupils in Year 6 transitioning into Year 7 in secondary school who do not have experience of the education testing programme.

Is testing compulsory?

Testing is voluntary, however, we would strongly encourage everyone to join in the asymptomatic testing programme to help break transmission links by identifying those that may be carrying the virus unknowingly. 

Positive Cases

Staff and students with a positive LFD test result should self-isolate in line with the stay at home guidance. They will also need to take a confirmatory PCR test to check if they have COVID19. Whilst awaiting the PCR result, the individual should continue to self-isolate. If the PCR test is taken within 2 days of the positive lateral flow test, and is negative, it overrides the LFD test and the student can return to school, as long as the individual doesn’t have COVID-19 symptoms.

Close Contacts

From September, close contacts will be identified via NHS Test and Trace rather than the school. Contacts will only be traced where the positive case specifically identifies the individual as being a close contact. Children will no longer be required to self-isolate, if they are contacted as a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case. Instead they will be advised to take a PCR test.

Home Testing

Following the two initial tests on site, students will collect their test at home kits and start testing at home, twice weekly.

Please do not send your child to school if they are unwell and are showing symptoms of Covid-19 which are a high temperature, a new or continuous cough, and a loss of taste and smell.

If your child is showing any of these symptoms:

  • Call the attendance line on 0114 254 2685 to report your child's absence
  • Ring NHS 111 for advice and/or to book a test
  • Continue to keep school informed

If your child, or anyone in your household, is displaying symptoms and/or has been advised to take a test:

  • Keep your child at home until you know the result(s) of the test
  • Inform school

If your child becomes unwell in school, and has Covid-19 symptoms, we will contact you immediately and ask that you collect your child and get a test. Your child will be placed into an isolated medical room, away from other staff and students until you are available to collect them. We ask that you update us with the progress of your child's symptoms and test result.

Please contact us if you need any further support.

Thank you