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From 8th March all pupils are due to return to school. Mass testing will take place on-site for all who have consent. Please read the following information about testing, or download the Q&A with parents and PowerPoint below:
Mass Testing is quite simple. Test as regularly as possible for safety and confidence. Staff can do their jobs and pupils can attend school knowing that there is no one currently infected/infectious. It also provides assurances that we are not infecting those most vulnerable in our school community and in our own homes.
All staff will now get twice weekly tests, starting with the day they return to school, with an additional test further on each week.
We hope all pupils will have a return to school test too, with two follow up tests 3-5 days apart. Moving forward, they will now be able to access twice weekly testing either in school, or at home.
Mass testing in all circumstances in school will be done through Lateral Flow tests. Swabs of the throat and nose are taken and input in to a handheld testing machine which gives a simple positive or negative result in 30 minutes.
This differs to a PCR test, (the most common ones you may have had up until now) which need to be sent off to a laboratory and results can take 24-48 hours to come back, sometimes much longer.
The results from Lateral Flow tests are very similar to the PCR tests, however they are not as sensitive. This means that you need to test more regularly to have the same level of confidence in the results.
Testing will only work as a supportive measure if we keep some of our other Covid-19 safeguards in place. Pupils should expect face coverings and social distancing to remain a part of school life for some time.