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Coronavirus - updated 17.03.20

Posted on: 17th Mar 2020

UPDATED 17th March 2020

Below is the latest advice from the Department of Health and Social Care and Public Health England regarding Coronavirus.

For details of the email sent out to parents by our principal Kieran Scanlon, please click here.

To read the current message from West Sussex County Council click here.

New guidance for households with symptoms


Yesterday, the Government introduced new guidance on whole household isolation in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak:

  • if you live alone and you have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home for 7 days from when your symptoms started
  • if you live with others and you or another member of the household have symptoms of coronavirus, then all household members must 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 house became ill. It is likely that people living within a household will infect each other or be infected already. Staying at home for 14 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community
  • for anyone in the household who starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for 7 days from when the symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in the original 14-day isolation period.

The symptoms are:

  • A high temperature (37.8 degrees and above)
  • A new, continuous cough

The full stay at home guidance for households with these symptoms can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance


The Prime Minister’s statement from Monday 16 March can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/pm-statement-on-coronavirus-16-march-2020


Handwashing advice

The most important thing individuals can do to protect themselves is to wash their hands more often, for at least 20 seconds, with soap and water. Public Health England recommends that in addition to handwashing before eating, and after coughing and sneezing, everyone should also wash hands after using toilets and travelling on public transport.

Watch this short NHS film for guidance:

Department for Education coronavirus helpline

The Department for Education coronavirus helpline is available to answer questions about COVID-19 relating to education and children’s social care. Staff, parents and young people can contact this helpline as follows:

Phone: 0800 046 8687
Opening hours: 8am to 6pm (Monday to Friday), 10am to 4pm (Saturday to Sunday)

Please note, we are currently experiencing high volumes of calls. We appreciate your patience at this time and apologise for any wait that you may experience. To ensure that we answer your calls as quickly as possible, we have now extended our opening hours to cover weekends and are increasing the number of call handlers available to answer your calls.

If you work in a school, please have your unique reference number (URN or UK PRN) available when calling the hotline.

Where to find the latest information
Updates on COVID-19:

https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

Guidance for educational settings:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-educational-settings-about-covid-19

 

Email from our Principal

Dear Parents & Carers, 

There is philosophy and there is reality.  At present, I have a significant number of teachers and support colleagues self isolating for very genuine reasons. Others are putting themselves at risk by continuing to be here and I need to give them permission to stay at home. Those of us who are not in an at risk group are happy to carry on until we are told not to by Public Health England. However in order to allow those colleagues who are at risk or showing symptoms to stay at home, we need to make some changes.  As such, in line with other schools in the area, I am going to ask year 9 and year 12 to remain at home and move to remote learning until further notice. 

This will ease demand at the school and allow us to operate at a much reduced capacity. I am starting with year nine as I hope they are mature enough to manage themselves at home if parents do not have the option to work from home. We will endeavor to stay in touch with them throughout the school day. (You will receive a further email from the team explaining how remote learning will work). 

We are receiving a high number of calls and emails at the moment.  I understand that people will  be anxious.  The collective answer to most of these questions is, if you are concerned and you wish to keep your children at home, we will authorise this and support you with the decision. Remote learning will only come online for years 9 and years 12 at this stage.

Please don't come to school unnecessarily, let's reduce the traffic right down. I don't say this lightly, we need to protect the vulnerable in our community.  For the vast majority of us we will experience a mild illness and recover quickly.  For some, looking around the world, it will be very serious  and there is nothing clever in trying to pretend it's not happening, so as such I'm sorry for the inconvenience this will cause you, but down the line I would rather be accused of overreaction than inaction. 

Please check the academy website for daily updates.

I appreciate your understanding.

Yours faithfully, 

Kieran Scanlon
Principal


Message from West Sussex

An update for all West Sussex schools
A message from Paul Wagstaff, West Sussex County Council’s Director of Education and Skills

Dear Parents and Carers,

Schools currently remain open and will aim to do so until advised by the Department for Education and Public Health England.

However following the latest government announcement, there has been a change to the advice on self-isolation and vulnerable groups.

If you and your child are well, please continue to come to school.

If you or anyone in your household is displaying symptoms then all members of the household should self-isolate for 14 days.

The symptoms are: a new persistent cough and/or a high temperature.

The following groups are also requested to remain at home.

Age >70
Adults who are eligible for a free flu vaccination due to a long-term health condition
Those who are immunocompromised
For further information, please visit the West Sussex County Council website - which also includes links to the latest government advice. 

This is a fast moving situation and we will continue to update when we have more information.”

We are in unprecedented times. I understand the challenges that you will you be facing and we will continue to support schools in managing this situation.

Regards,

Paul


 

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