3rd January 2022
Happy New Year! I hope you and your families have had a good Christmas and New Year.
I have put a summary of this week in table form for you to read.
Our expectation is that every pupil, student and member of staff complete at least one test this week. The tests are numbered with our highest preference being test number 1 on the table. In a change to previous guidance, we have been told this week that even if someone has tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days, they are strongly encouraged to take part in testing once they have completed their isolation period for their prior infection. After this week, we expect students and staff to complete a saliva test every Monday and Thursday, dropping it off in the test bins on the way into school in the morning.
You will have seen the recent news that the government are expecting students and staff to wear face coverings (unless exempt) in classrooms as well as in communal areas until at least the 26th January. We have already wearing in classrooms as optional last term, and will be expecting it of everyone (unless exempt) for the first few weeks. We do not expect them to be worn in playground or quad during breaktime or lunchtime, or when eating indoors. Please ensure that your daughter or son has a face covering they can wear to school. They will be able to purchase a disposable face covering from school if they have forgotten theirs, but we want to reduce the numbers using disposable face coverings to reduce waste.
A reminder that the 10 day self-isolation period for those testing positive for coronavirus has been reduced to 7 days as long as two negative LFD tests are taken on days 6 and 7, and that the person is well enough to be in. If so, self-isolation ends at the end of day 7. More information can be found here: Stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection. It remains the case that close contacts do not need to self-isolate as well if they are children, have been fully vaccinated or cannot get vaccinated for medical reasons.
Online Sexual Harassment
A very important piece of work has been done by the Children's Commissioner and can be found here: Talking to your child about online sexual harassment: A guide for parents. As parents, we never want to be in the situation where we could have acted earlier. The recommendation is that conversations start in late primary school - but it is never too late to start. We know from bitter experience that these conversations are real in the lives of young people today and that they affect children daily in Southampton.
We look forward to having everyone back from Thursday.
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